Recorded in many spellings as shown below, this is a Germanic surname of pre 5th century origins. It derives from the very popular personal name Siegfried, first introduced into England in the Anglo-Saxon period, and again as a surname thousand years later. The latter was during the18th century possibly as result of increased Anglo-German cooperation with the accession of the Hanoverian dynasty to the British crown. The name is derived from the elements "sigi" meaning victory, and "frith", peace. Many early Germanic names are such compounds, and include other examples such as Sieghard, (victory-hard), and Siegmund, (victory-protection). The surnames from Siegfried include Seefried, Seifert, Seiffert, Seyfahrt, Seiferlin, Sievertsen and others. Examples of early German recordings include Syfert der Metzger of Eblingen in 1347, Veit Seyffert of Flein in 1529, whilst in England Sarah, the daughter of Peter and Elizabeth Seifert was christend on February 11th 1784 at Wandsworth, London. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In medieval England this was sometimes known as the 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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