Recorded in several spelling forms including Laurie, Lawrey, Lowre, Lowres, Lowrie, Lowry, and Lavery, this is a surname which can arguably be of either English, Scottish or Irish origins. If Gaelic by which it is taken to be Scottish or Irish, the surname is said to derive from the ancient pre 10th century personal name 'Labhradha', meaning 'spokesman, and as such was originally given to the chief of the clan, the one chosen to speak on behalf of the community. However if Scottish it can also be like the English, a development of Lawrence, a name brought into the two countries by returning crusaders of the 12th century. If English it may be a form of Lawrence, or it can be locational from a village called 'Lowery' in the county of Devon. The first recorded spelling of the name anywhere in the world is believed to be that of Robert Lowri of Cumberland in the Subsidy Tax Rolls of that county in 1332, whilst the first Scottish recording was that of Gilbert Lowrie of Coldingham in the year 1497. Other recordings include: David Lowry, who was a kings officer at Irvine, Scotland in 1529, whilst Alice Lowre married James Chilton at St Margarets church, Westminster, on January 29th 1604. In Ireland where recordings are much later owing to the loss of the original documents in 1922, Alice Lavery and Bernard Conelly were married in County Fermanagh in 1789. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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