This interesting surname is of English locational origin from Lonesborough in the East Riding of Yorkshire, recorded as "Lodenesburg" in the Domesday Book of 1086 and as "Landenesburgh" in the Early Yorkshire Charters (1110). The placename is composed of the Old Danish personal (by)name "Lothaen" meaning hairy plus the Old English pre 7th Century "burg" meaning a fort or a fortified place. The surname is first recorded in the early 13th Century, (see below). One, Thomas de Lownesburgh, appears in the Register of the Freemen of the City of York (1354). In the modern idiom the surname is also found with variant spelling Londesborough. Recordings of the surname from the Yorkshire church registers include; the marriage of Alice Lownsbrough and Thomas Shiminge, which took place on August 9th 1568, at Hackness; on July 1st 1576, Maud Lownsbrough married Phillip Story in the same place; Elizabeth Lownsbrough married Richard Trott on November 5th 1592, also at Hackness; and on May 28th 1594, the marriage of Alice Lownsbrough and Richard Morden took place in Settrington. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Osward de Launeburc (witness), which was dated 1219, in the "Assize Court Rolls of Yorkshire", 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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