Recorded in many forms as shown below this can best be described as an English surname of sometimes French origins. If it is English then the derivation is from the Yorkshire and Kent villages now spelt as Leyburn or Leybourne, but originally recorded in (for instance) the Pipe Rolls of Kent (see below) as "Leburn". If however it is from the French it seems to derive from "Le Bon", a (probably) ironic nickname which may mean the opposite of the literal translation - "The good". It is almost impossible to say with any particular 20th century spelling whether the origin is French or English, this can only be done in individual cases by genealogy. Over the centuries the surname has developed in many ways, and these include such forms as Layborn, Labern, Leeburne, Lebbern, Leban, Laban, Laboune, Lebon, Lebbon, Leyban, Labram, Labrum and other rarities such as Leyband, Leband and Lebang. Examples of the surname recording include Honor Le Bon at St Botolphs Bishopgate, in the city of London, on August 13th 1581, Christopher Lebbon at St Dunstans in the East, Stepney, on April 24th 1608, and by contrast on January 19th 1699, at Farlam, Cumberland, William Labram. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert de Leburn. This was dated 1192, in the Pipe Rolls of Kent, during the reign of King Richard 1st, known as "The Lionheart", 1189 - 1199. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes 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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