Recorded as Mahomet and Mehmet this surname is Islamic in origin. In most parts of the world, the use of a single hereditary surname is a modern phenomena, in some cases only dating from after the Second World War in 1945. Many of these surnames are often based upon heroic or religious figures from history. The most prominent in this category are the surnames which are associated with, or claim descent from, the Prophet Mohammed, the founder of Islam between the years 562 and 632 a.d. The name translates literally as "the praised one", and the name has been held by such as King Mohammed 11nd, the captor of Constantinople in 1453, and Mohammed Ahmed (circa 1860 - 1896), better known as "The Mahdi". Curiously the name as a surname has been recorded in England since the 18th century, and it is assumed that the nameholders in these cases embrased Christianity. As to where, as individuals they came from, is not known. These early recordings include: Elmiloudie Ben Mohammed who married Ann Adelaide Chatelain, at the famous church of St. Martin in the Fields, Westminster, on November 4th 1862, whilst earlier in London, during the Napoleonic Wars of 1794 to 1815, William Mahomed, also recorded in the spelling of Mohomet, married Jane Jeffreys at St. Mary Le Bone, London, on November 26th 1806. The first recording as a surname and during the rule of the Turkish Emoire, may be that at Judea, in Palestine, on June 1st 1780, of the birth of Kahil Mohammed, the son of Abed Al Gunee Mohammed. Hereditary surnames first became necessary when some governments introduced personal taxation. More recently the need has been emphasised in almost every country by the increasing use of the telephone as the prime means of communication.
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