This interesting name is of Anglo-Saxon origin and derives from the Old English pre 7th Century personal name "Leofwine", which is composed of the elements "leof", dear, beloved and "wine", friend. The personal name is recorded before the Norman Conquest of 1066 as "Leofwin", "Lifwin" and "Leuuin", where the double "u" stands for "w". In Middle English the name became "Lefwine". This was the name borne by an English missionary who became the patron of Ghent, and the given name was consequently popular in England and the Low Counties during the Middle Ages. The surname development includes William Lowen (1275, Worcestershire), Roger Livene (1279, Cambridgeshire) and Robert Levene (1327, Essex). The modern surname can be found as "Lewin", "Lowin", and "Lowen", with the patronymic forms "Lewins", "Lewens", and "Livens". One Alice Lowen was christened on the 27th of January 1576 at St. John's, Hackney in London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Lewyn, which was dated 1230, in the "Northamptonshire Pipe Rolls", 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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