This surname, with variant spellings Mawbey, Maby, Mauby, Mowby, and Mawbee, is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is locational from one of the estimated seven to ten thousand villages and hamlets that have now disappeared from the maps in Britain. The prime cause of these "disappearances" was the enforced "clearing" and dispersal of the former inhabitants to make way for sheep pastures at the height of the wool trade in the 14th Century. Natural causes such as the Black Death of 1348, also contributed to the lost village phenomenon. The component elements of the place name are believed to be from the Olde English pre 7th Century "meaw" meaning sea-mew or sea gull and the Old Norse "by" a village, farm or homestead. On August 31st 1589, William Maybey married Alice Nashe, at St. Lawrence Pountney, London. The marriage of John Hawby to Mary Underwood took place on October 22nd 1663, at St. Botolph's, Bishopsgate, and on September 24th 1674, Thomas Mawby married Mary Ansell, at Knightsbridge, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Suzanna Mabe, which was dated February 19th 1572, marriage to William Connysis, at St. Matthew, Friday St., London, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, known as "Good Queen Bess", 1558 - 1603. 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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