Recorded in several forms including Nester, Nestor, Noster, and Nostor (English) Nesterov and Nesterin (Russian) and Nestorovic (Croatian), this is a surname of Ancient Greek origins. It is believed to derive from the word 'neisthai' meaning to return safely, and would seem to have been a 'Crusader' name. That is to say a name which was brought back to Europe from the Middle East in the 12th century and following one of the twelve famous expeditions, known to history as the Crusades. These expeditions were principally based on Greece and Cypus, and their primary aim was to free the Holy Land (Palestine) from the Muslim grip.All the crusades were unsuccessful, but this did not stop returning warriors from bringing back Greek or biblical names to give to their children in honour of their fathers prowess. Some names were very popular particularly those associated with a definitive saint, apostle or disciple. In this case it is said that the name is associated with a 3rd century bishop in the province of Pamphilia. He was popular in the Orthodox church, which may account for why his popularity in Northern Europe was rather more muted, and hence the later surname was much rarer. Early examples of the surname recording in the early English registers include Francis Nester at St Botolphs Bishopgate, in the city of London, on May 7th 1570, and three centuries later, Eugene Nestor who married Ursula Disting at Andrews Enfield, in the county of Middlesex, on November 7th 1812.
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