This is a medieval surname which is almost certainly English, but of pre 7th century Norse-Viking origins. It appears to derive from the Scandanavian word "sker" meaning a steep or perhaps rocky place. As such the surname may have been topographical, and describe somebody who lived by such a place, or it could be locational. In that case it is probably a short form of a village name such as Skircoat near Halifax in West Yorkshire, or Skirgill, near Penrith, in the former county of Cumberland, or it may originate from a now "lost" medieval hamlet of which the only reminder in the late 20th century, is the surviving surname itself. Locational surnames were also usually "from" names. That is to say names given to people after they left their original homes to move somewhere else. Recorded as Skurr, and orginally Skurre, and very occasionally as Skures, this surname has been well recorded in the surviving church registers of the diocese of Greater London since Elizabethan times. Examples of these recordings include William Skurre, the son of Richard Skurre, who was christened at the church of St Mary's Bermondsey on March 23rd 1589. Two years later on June 20th 1591 at the same church we have the recording of William Skurr, given as being the son of Richard Skurr. This is almost certainly a reference to the same father, and an indication of how name spelling changes could occur almost at will in those times. A later recording is that of William and Elizabeth Skurr who were married at St Stephans church, Coleman Street, in the city of London, on May 10th 1751.
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