This surname is to be found listed in England listed by the International Genealogical Index amongst Playfair, Playfer, Playfere and others. Since these are believed to be English and Scottish surbnames and to actually mean what they say, that is a nickname for a person who "played fair" or given the robust humour of the medieval times, the reverse, we have a problem. Pluvier as Pluveire seems to be first recorded in England in the year 1652 when Isaac Pluveire appears in the register of St Giles Cripplegate in the city of London. Unless this is a gross misspelling, which is always possible but unlikely in this case, it clearly has nothing to do with Playfair or its variations but is a variant of the French surname Plouvier, meaning to rain. Plouvier as a surname has several possible meanings including a nickname for a miserable person, or a maker of waterproof clothes, or a supplier of pipes or vessels for carrying fresh water. In fact it is the latter which seems to have most provenance. In England it was almost certainly a Huguenot protestant refugee name from the Mid 17th century. The recordings taken from the surviving church registers of the city of London include Martha Playfer at the church of St Lawrence Puntney on October 3rd 1582, Samule Pleayfaier on November 2nd 1654 at St Olave Southwark and Thomas Playfair at All Hallows the Great, London wall, on May 8th 1737.
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