The Poiser or Peiser was the medieval equivalent of the modern "Weights and Measures" or "Standards" Inspector, although "The Poiser" had more civic powers and could order the arrest and trial of manufacturers and shopkeepers found to be supplying inadequate goods. Oddly enough "Poise" remains a slang word in parts of the North of England, and it means basically "to Kich or Knock away". The modern name spelling includes Poyser, Poynser, Poyzer, Peiser, Peizer, Piser, Pyser, Pyzer and Pozer, the name development including Elyas Poyser (1219, Yorkshire), Josceus Le Pesur (1224, Kent), John Poser (1296, Sussex). The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Simon Le Pesur. which was dated 1198, in the "Pipe Rolls of County Kent." during the reign of King Richard 1, known as "The Lionheart", 1189 - 1199. 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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