This surname in England is probably locational, although the name in exactly the same spelling is recorded in Eastern Europe, and particularly Romania. The Romanian version is however job descriptive and describes a merchant, one who negotiates, and whilst there will no doubt be a few 'Negus' nameholders even in England who have this descent, the vast majority are of a quite different origin. The English 'Negus' is generally described as being of uncertain etymology, but the probability is that it is dialectal and describes one who lived at a 'neu hus' (new house) from the pre 10th century Olde English. The surname and place name 'Newhouse' is not uncommon, whilst 'Negus' is relatively rare. The name was believed to come from East Anglia and this maybe so as it was an area which has both a rich dialect, and prior to the 16th century was largely cut off by the mass of fens and rivers that criss-crossed the region. However the earliest tenable recordings seem to be in both London and East Anglia, claims have been made for the West Country and Cornwall, but these do not stand upto examination. Early recordings include Henry Neegoose of Norwich, who married Mary Loveland at St Gregory's church, on April 12th 1621, and Henry Neguse, a witness at St Giles, Norwich, on March 2nd 1637. Other examples are John Negus at St James Clerkenwell in 1671, and Ursula Negus, christened at St Thomas, the Apostle, London, in 1707. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Negose, which was dated 1598, in the register of students at Oxford University, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1st, 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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