This English surname recorded as Pickburn, Piborn, Piborne, Piburn and more usually Pyburn, is locational. It originates from a "lost" medieval village, which is believed to have been in the north country. The original village name is probably of pre 9th Century Norse-Viking origins, and may derive from "pic" meaning a hill or pike and either "burna" - a stream or possibly "buskr", a bush. The explanation of a stream on the hill is rather illogical, not that logic plays much of a roll in surname origins, a bush or bushes, on a hill does seem to make more sense, but is not proven by recordings. No such place, or indeed anything like the spelling, has been identified in the medieval "lost" village list, nor apparently is there an area in Britain with anything like the spelling. Curiously the first recordings seem to be in London. This suggests that the original village was dramatically cleared, either through civil war, plague or enclosure. The latter occurred when the local land owner secured the right to fence off the tenants from their common grazing lands, forcing them to seek a livelihood elsewhere. "Elsewhere" was often London as this was probably the only city known to the villagers. A small number of Pyburn's are recorded in County Cork, Ireland. It is believed that they were granted lands there in the 16th century. The first recorded spelling of the family name is believed to be that of Elisabeth Pybourne, and dated 1565, in the register of the church of St Antholin, Budge Row, London, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1st, known as "Good Queen Bess", 1558 - 1603.
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