This unusual name is a variant spelling of the Olde English metonymic surname "Panner" meaning a maker of pans or possibly baskets, from the French "Paner" or the later "Panier". The name development and recording includes for both possibilities although it is a reasonable assumption that the variant "Punyer" is from the French "Panier". The records include Peter le Panner found in Essex in 1262 and he was definately a "Caster of Pans" whilst Edith Panier, in the 1279 Hundred Rolls of Huntingdon made baskets. Elizabeth Paunier recorded in 1741 was French Huguenot, whilst Nathaniel Ponner was found at St. Matthews' Church, Bethnal Green on February 19th 1775. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Punyer, which was dated February 7th 1794, christened at Christchurch, Spitalfields, London, during the reign of King George III, "Farmer George", 1760 - 1820. 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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