Recorded in the spellings of Stanway, Stanaway, and Stonway, this is an English medieval surname. It is locational or topographical and describes either a former inhabitant of the villages of Stanway in Essex or Gloucesterr, or possibly a person who was resident by a stone or paved road. As the only stone and paved roads in England in ancient times and upto the 18th century were those provided by the Romans during their occupation of 55 - 410 a.d., the name refers to a Roman Road. The village name is first recorded as "aet Stanwaegun" in the famous Anglo Saxon Chronicles, sometimes described as the worlds first newspaper, in the year 995 a.d. This was during the long reign of King Aethelred, always known in history as "The Unready". Later in the Domesday Book of 1086 it is recorded as "Stanwega", both recordings are from the county of Essex. The later surname development includes: Hawise de Stanweye of Cambridge in 1274, the Rev. William Stanway of Norfolk in 1511, whilst in 1659, Thomas Stanaway married Millicest Hickman at St.James, Clerkenwell, in the city of London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Hervey de Stanweye. This was dated 1273, in the Hundred Rolls of the county of Norfolk, during the reign of King Edward Ist of England, 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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