This interesting and long-established surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and belongs to that sizeable group of early European surnames that were gradually created from the habitual use of nicknames. These nicknames were originally given with reference to a variety of personal characteristics, such as physical attributes or peculiarities, and mental and moral characteristics. The derivation, in this instance, is from the Olde English pre 7th Century "pryde" (Middle English "pryde, pride"), used to denote an arrogant man, or someone who had played the part of this personified vice in a medieval pageant of the Seven Deadly Sins. Occasionally, the surname is held to have two other sources; one Welsh and the other Cornish. If the former, the derivation is from the Welsh "prid", "precious, dear", denoting a cherished and valued person. As a Cornish surname Pride is a variant of the Cornish "Praed", itself a topographical name for a dweller in a meadow, from "pras", meadow. Early examples of the surname include: Richard Pride (Shropshire, 1221), and Roger Pride (London, 1273). On August 9th 1604, Andrew Pride and Isabell Rende were married at St. Dunstan's, Stepney, London. The term "Pride's Purge" originated from the lock-out of 130 members from the House of Commons by Thomas Pride, one of the signatories of Charles 1's death warrant in 1649. A Coat of Arms granted to the Pride family is a black shield with three small lampreys haurient in fess argent. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John le Pride, which was dated 1208, in the "Pipe Rolls of Devonshire", during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. 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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