This interesting and unusual surname, with variant spellings Seabert, Sebright, Seebright, Sawbridge etc., derives from the Old English pre 7th Century personal name Saebeorht, a compound of the elements "sae", sea, plus "beorht", bright. This personal name was borne by a 7th Century King of Essex, and is occasionally found on record until the 10th Century. It re-emerges as "Sebertus" in the "Pipe Rolls of Gloucestershire", dated 1199. One, Ricardus filius (son of) Sebriht was noted in the "Pipe Rolls of leicestershire", dated 1200. The surname first appears in the latter part of the 13th Century, (see below). Other early recordings include Peter Sabright, ("The Close Rolls of Essex", 1290) and Michael Sebryth, ("The subsidy Rolls of Suffolk", 1327). one, William Sebright who lived in the reign of Henry 11 is believed to have given his name to Great Seabrights in great Baddow, (Essex). On September 28th 1564, Jane Seabright, an infant, was christened in St. Mary Whitechapel, Stepney, London, and on February 2nd 1623, Michael Seabright was christened in Pirton, Worcestershire. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard Sebriht, which was dated 1273, The Hundred Rolls of Oxfordshire, during the reign of King Edward 1, "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. 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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