This unusual name is believed to be a variant spelling of the Anglo-Saxon habitational name "Leofels -hamm" (the house or home of Leofa), and now found in the Sussex village of Leasam. However it is also possible that the modern spelling is a developed form of the patronymic Layson, Leeson, or Leeson, although this again has 8th Century Anglo-Saxon associations being derived from "the son of Lece", Roger Leceson being recorded in the 1332 Rolls of Cumbria. In this case "Lece" is a development either of "Laes" meaning a pasture, or "Leticia" a female name. The modern spelling is very rare although a Lewis Leyson is recorded at Oxford University as early 1453 A.D.. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Ann Leyshon, which was dated June 6th 1830, married Samuel Breatt at St. Martins in the Field, Westminster, during the reign of King William 1V, known as "The Soldier King", 1830 - 1837. 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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