Recorded as Schweir, Schwier, Schwiers, Schwerin, Schwering, and probably others, this is a German locational surname. It orginates either from a place called Schwerin, or is topographical and described a lake dweller, one who lived by standing water. Locational surnames could describe either a person who came from a particular place or who lived at that place. If the adjective 'von' was used this implied ownership of the village or estate, and was an early status indicator similar to the French 'de or du'. The surname is well recorded in the early surviving church registers of Germany, and particularly in the province of Westfalen, although surprisingly the surname itself does not seem to be recorded in any of the popular directories of surnames. Early examples of the surname recordings include Conrad Schwerin or Zwerin given as being the borgermeister of Barth in Pommerania in 1449, Hermann Schwering, the pastor of Schleibnitz, Magedeburg, in 1562, Anna Schwiers who married Jakob Esser at Wevelingroven, Rheinland, on February 6th 1674, and Christian Schwier, a christening witness at Petershagen, Westfalen, on September 25th 1746.
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