This interesting and unusual surname, with variant spellings Scram(m)age, Scrauniage, Scrange, Scranedge, Scrinege etc., recorded in English church registers from the mid 17th Century, is believed to be a dialectal variant of the 15th Century word "scrimmage", itself coming from the earlier "scrimish", synonymous with "skirmish". The ultimate origin of the word is the Old French "eskermir", to fence, skirmish fight hand-to-hand, and the ensuing surname was therefore occupational for a fencer or perhaps a nickname for someone who had engaged in a notable Scrimmage. The surname is particularly well recorded in Worcestershire registers. On April 25th 1764, Mary Scranage and William Tyrrel were married in Astley, and on December 28th 1776, William Scrannage, an infant, was christened in Bromsgrove. The christening of one, Ann Scrinage took place in Gornall, Staffordshire, on March 3rd 1839, and on July 23rd 1849, Eliza Deborah Scrammage was christened in St. Martin's, Birmingham, Warwickshire. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Phillipe Scrauniage, (witness at a christening), which was dated September 29th 1650, at Barnstaple, Devonshire, during the reign of Oliver Cromwell, known as "The Great Protector", 1649 - 1658. 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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