Recorded in the spellings of Pester, Pestor, Pestur, and Pistor, this is an English surname, but of Olde French origins. It derives from the word "pestour" meaning a baker, a description introduced by the Norman after the 1066 Invasion of England. However as by this time the normal term of Baker was well established, "pestour" struggled for centuries to make an impact. Nethertheless the name even in the earliest days, was recorded right across the country which suggests that it may have referred to a particular type of baking. Occupational surnames were amongst the first to be created, however they were not the first to become hereditary, this was nortmally the province of locational surnames. Only if a son followed his father into the same trade did the name become hereditary, and then not usually before the 13th century. Early examples of this surname recording include William le Pestor, in the rolls of Lincolnshire for the year 1239, and John Pistor, in the 1281 lists of trades in London. Alicia le Peteresse was recorded in the register of Ramsey Abbey, Cambridge, in the year 1270, whilst Robert de la Pesterye, is recorded in Somerset in 1280, suggesting that he was "of the bakery" but necessarily the baker. The first known recording is that of Robertus Pistor, in the Winton Rolls of the county of Hampshire, in the year 1115.
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