This is a famous English surname. However it is one which originally started out as a personal name of endearment, with Paternoster de Mumbi being recorded in the Danelaw rolls of the county of Lincoln in the year 1169. In Latin the first word of the Lords Prayer is "Paternoster..." given as being a noun which translates as "rosary". However whilst this applied to the personal or first name, the later surname as in Robert Paternoster of Berkshire in the tax rolls known as the "Feet of fines" is probably job descriptive for a maker of rosaries and chaplets.According to the famous Victorian etymologits Canon Charles Bardsley the development is from "paternosterer" or even paternostermaker, one Nicholas Paternostermaker being recorded in the city of London in 1388, although the name is now believed to be extinct. It is also possible that for some name holders the name may be locational. Paternoster Row survives as a street name near St Pauls Cathedral in the city of London, and it is said that similar named streets are to be found in Carlisle, Cumbria, and Chertsey in Surrey. In the time of King Edward 1st (1272 - 1307) there was a place called Paternoster Bank in East Hendred, Berkshire. This land was held on lease provided that the leaseholder said a paternoster each day for the soul of the king!
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