This uncommon and intriguing name has two distinct interpretations, both of Old French origin, and introduced into England after the Norman Conquest of 1066. Firstly, the surname can be derived from the Old French "parlier", Anglo-Norman French "parlour", advocate, lawyer, a speaker; this term was used as an occupational surname for a lawyer, and as a nickname for a "chatterbox". In some instances, the name may be occupational for a "parlour servant"; the parlour was originally the conversation and interview room in a monastery. Examples of the surname from this derivation include: Richard le Parlour, listed in the Chartulary of Ramsey Monastery in 1219, and Richard atte Parlur, recorded in the Sussex Subsidy Rolls of 1296. The second possible source for the name is from a derivative of the Old French and Middle English "perle, pearl, giving an occupational surname for a seller of pearls, or perhaps a maker of glass pearls. One Henry le Perler is recorded in the Calendar of Letter Books (London) in 1291. Examples from London Church Registers include the marriage of Michaell Parlour and Margaret Relfe on February 2nd 1574, at St. Peter-le-Poer. The Coat of Arms most associated with the name is "Vair, on a cross gules (red) a lion's head erased or (gold)". The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert Parler, which was dated 1086, in the Domesday book of Wiltshire, during the reign of King William 1, known as "William the Conqueror", 1066 - 1087. 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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