Recorded in several spellings as shown below, this is an English surname of French origins. It is a variant of the medieval surname Pilgrim, which itself is a nickname for a person who had been on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. Taken from the French "pelegrin", it literally means a traveller, and was generally applied to people who "entered the country from foreign parts", so it might have been sardonic. Pilgrimages were often imposed as penances, and if the sin was really grave, then a trip to foreign parts could be the punishment. "Pilgrim" was also occasionally used as a given name, and the surname may in some cases be derived from this use. The surname is first recorded in the late 12th Century (see below), whilst modern spellings include Pilgram, Peagram, Peagrim, Peggram, Pegram, Pigrome and Paragreen. William Pegerim was recorded in 1200 in the Curia Rolls of Dorset, while the Assize Court Rolls of Somerset mention a Robert Peregrine in 1243. Margery Pegram married William Simpson on September 18th 1582 at St. Lawrence Jewry, Milk Street, London, and James Pagram married Ann Ansell on March 3rd 1806 at Tottenham, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Hugo Pilegrim, which was dated 1185, in the "Records of the Templars in England in the 12th Century" (Lees), during the reign of King Henry 11, known as "The Builder of Churches", 1154 - 1189. 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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