This interesting and unusual surname with variant spellings Lockyear, Lockyers, Lockeyear, Lockier and Lokier may derive from two possible sources. It may have originated from the Old English pre seventh Century word "loc", lock, plus the agent suffix "-er", which implies that the name may have been a metonymic occupational name for a locksmith. The name may also be an English occupational name for a lock keeper i.e. someone who opened and closed a lock across a river, or a topographical name for a dweller by the enclosure (a place that could be locked), both from the Old English "loca" (Middle English Loke), plus the agent suffix "-er", "for someone who works with", or when attached to a topographical feature implies, "dweller at". One Henry le Lokier appeared in 1275, in the Hundred Rolls of London and the Subsidy Rolls of Sussex record a Simon le Lockyere in 1296 and in the Feet of Fines for Kent in 1316. Nicholas Lockyer (1611-1685) educated at Oxford in 1633, took the covenant and became a powerful preacher, but was compelled to leave the country for disregarding Uniformity Act 1666 and 1670. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John le Lokier, which was dated 1221, in the "Assize Rolls of Warwickshire", during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. 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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