Recorded in the spellings of Just, Juste, Jux, this is a surname of French origins, which is well recorded in England. It derives from the Latin word 'justus' and was introduced into England by the Norman-French invaders after the conquest of 1066. The literal translation is that it means a just person. As such it is reasonable to assume that it was originally a metonymic or nickname surname for a person who was considered to be 'just', perhaps a local judge or similar dignitary. An early recording is that of Gilbertus Juste in the Pipe Rolls of the county of Lincoln in the year 1203. It is said that the baptismal name first reached prominence in the 4th century a.d. when one 'Justus' was appointed as the bishop of Lyon, in France. In so far that it achived popularity in England, the surname seems to be most associated with the county of Suffolk in East Anglia. There two brothers Martin and Roger Just are recorded in the pipe rolls for the county for the year 1292, these people being particularly associated with the village of Thurlestone. Another recording is that of Thomas le Guste in the Subsidy Rolls of the county of Somerset in 1327. This recording suggests that perhaps Thomas was not so 'just'. The later medieval period as the Norman influence faded, was one of very robust and Chaucerian humour, where often the (nick)names bestowed meant the very opposite of that they appeared to portray!
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