This is a locational surname which derives from the village of Lasham in Hampshire, near Southamton. First recorded in the 1086 Domesday Book as 'Esseham' the word translates as 'The little water meadow' from the Olde English 'laessa' (little) and ham(m) - a piece of low lying land or water meadow. Locational surnames usually developed when the inhabitants left their original home to seek employment elsewhere. They were then given as their identification, the name of their former village, or if they moved some distance, the name of the county. In this case the first recording (see below) is so far from Hampshire, as to suggest that other places called Lasham may have existed, but if this is the case we have not been able to establish any proof. The village is first recorded as Lasham in 1175, whilst the first examples of the church recordings are not until the mid 17th century when John and Bridget Lasham were recorded at Headley in Hampshire on January 23rd 1663. For the next two hundred years Headley was the centre of the surname, an example being Richard Lasham who married Frances Knight there on May 9th 1786. In London recordings commence with Sarah Lasham, the daughter of John and Susannah, christened at St Botolphs without Aldergate, on March 1st 1700. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard de Lasham, which was dated 1273, in the Hundred Rolls of Suffolk County, during the reign of King Edward 1, known as 'The hammer of the Scots' 1272 - 1307. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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