Recorded in several forms incluiding Snare, Snar, Snarr, and diminutives Snaree, Snarie, Snarey, Snary, and others, this is an English surname. It is however of pre 7th century Norse-Viking origins, and derives from the word "snarr" meaning swift or fast. In origin it is medieval and was either an occupational name for a swift runner, possibly an athlete or messenger, or more likely it was a nickname either for somebody who moved very quickly, or given the robust humour of the period, the complete reverse! Early examples of the recordings include Richard Snari, in the pipe rolls of Hampshire in the year 1200, and Andrew Snary, who is recorded in the tax registers of Essex in 1224. Later examples of recording in the church registers include John Snarre who married Ann Boyden on October 14th 1711, at Pinchbeck in Lincolnshire, and Martha Snare who married James Coley on August 24th 1806, at St. Leonard's Shoreditch. A coat of arms granted to the Danish Snarre family has the blazon of shield divided quarterly blue and red, and charged with with a cock's foot in gold. 1199 - 1216. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In 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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