This famous surname could be described as both Old Welsh and Medieval English. It derives from the pre 7th century word "llwyd" meaning literally "grey". As such it was originally given either as a baptismal name or as a nickname. If the latter it probably described a grey haired person at a time when few lived to be old, or perhaps a holy man, one who habitually wore grey garments. It is an example of a sizeable group of early European surnames that were gradually created from the use of nicknames. These nicknames were given with reference to occupation, or to a variety of characteristics, such as physical peculiarities, or even supposed resemblance to an animal's or bird's appearance. The surname is first recorded in the 14th Century (see below), and early recordings include: Ithell Lloit, who appears in the records of Chirk, Wales, in 1391, and Richard Lloyd, who was recorded in the Subsidy Rolls of Suffolk in 1524. A number of namebearers including Jenkin Lloyde of Montgomeryshire, and Griffith Lloid of Radnor, were entered in the register of students at Oxford University during the period 1577 - 1585. Edward Lloyd, who flourished circa 1692, kept a coffee-house in Lombard Street, city of London, and it is from him that the great commercial corporation known as "Lloyd's" derives its name. His premises was the centre of shipbroking and the marine insurance business in the late sixteen hundreds. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard Loyt. This was dated 1327, in the Tax Subsidy Rolls of Worcestershire, during the reign of King Edward 111rd of Egland, 1327 - 1377. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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