There are two possible origins for this unusual name. The first is from the Olde English pre 7th century 'pudde' - a word meaning 'stout or round' and given as a nickname to a maker of pies - a butcher. The second is a variant spelling of the French 'pied de fer' - 'feet of iron' - again a nickname for a soldier or foot traveller who covered considerable distances. it is also a possible nickname for one who wore 'iron boots' but this is probably the same meaning as a soldier. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Wilihelm Piedefer which was dated 1186 The Pipe Rolls of Worcester during the reign of King Henry 11 The Builder 1154-1189 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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