This interesting surname is of English origin. It is recorded in various spellings including Milward, Millward, Millard, Millyard and Mellard, and is an occupational name for someone in charge of a mill. The derivation is from the pre 7th Century "mylen" meaning a mill, and "weard", the keeper of. In Southern England and the West Midlands Millard this was the normal medieval term for a miller. The surname dates back to the late 13th Century, (see below). Further recordings include Cecilia le Mulvard in the register of Early London Personal Names in 1286 and Richard Meleward in the Subsidy Tax Rolls of Sussex in 1296. Early church recordings include William Milward who married Elizabeth Peters on April 28th 1572, at St. Lawrence Poutney, and Richard Millward, who married Margerie Heames on March 24th 1600 at St. Martin Orgar, bothin the city of London. Edward Milward (1712 - 1757) was an important physician who wrote a treatise on gangrene. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John le Milleward. This was dated 1279, in the Hundred Rolls of Huntingdonshire, during the reign of King Edward 1st known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes known as the 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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