Recorded as Starmer, Starmore, Staumer and possibly others, this is a medieval English surname. It has two possible origins. The first is derived from a pre 7th century Old English personal name Stanmoer, meaning "famous stone." Secondly it can be locational either from Stanmere in Sussex, recorded in the Anglo-Saxon charters of 765 a.d and later the Domesday Book of 1086 as Stanmere, meaning "stony lake," or the two Stanmore villages in Middlesex which have exactly the same meaning. Locational surnames are usually "from" names. That is to say names given as easy identification to people who for whatever reason moved away from their original homesteads. Spelling over the centuires being at best indifferent, and local dialects very thick, often lead to the creation of "sounds like" spellings. Amongst the early sample recordings are the christenings of William Starmar on October 28th 1621 at St. Peter the Great, Chichester, and in St. Botolph's Bishopsgate, city of London, that of Beryman Starmer on December 18th 1681. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert de Stanmere, which was dated 1206, Curia Rolls of Middlesex, during the reign of King John, known as 'Lackland', 1199-1216. 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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