This interesting and unusual name is English. It was originally a personal name of pre 7th century and derives from the Old German word "Faeger" meaning fair. It was equally popular in its different spellings in England, Norway, Denmark and Sweden and was also taken up with enthusiasm by the Norman invaders of England in 1066. The variant spellings include Faire, Fayre, Faers, Fayer, Fyers, Phair, Phare and Phayre. The early recordings include Robert Faier, in the Suffolk Court Rolls of 1191, Henry le Vayre in the Duchy of Cornwall Accounts for 1297, Dorothy Fayre (1573, Stepney), Elizabeth Faire (1616, London) and Abraham Fair (1799, London). Amongst the early recording is that of Robert Faires who married Anne Flaws on June 2nd 1696 at St Dunstan's, Stepney, London. A coat of arms granted to Sir Arthur Phayre (Chief Commissioner in British Burmah has the blazon of Gules a cross moline argent, surmounted of a bend azure in the sinister chief an Eastern Crown ore, all within a border of the last. The Crest being, out of an eastern crown a dove holding a laurel branch. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Edeua Faira, which was dated 1086, in the Domesday Book of Middlesex, during the reign of King William 1, known as "The Conqueror", 1066 - 1087. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes 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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