Recorded in a number of spellings including Sterrie, Sterry, Storey, Storry, and Styrroy, this is an English surname. It is either occupational for a herdsman, or a medieval nickname for a careless and rough person or possibly, an early baptismal name of the pre 7th century which survived the Norman Conquest of 1066, after which English names tended to disappear as not being "politically correct". Originating from the word "stor or sterre", it translates as "young ox". Whatever its origin it is one of the very first of all surnames to be recorded with Johannes le Ster appearing in the Hundred Rolls of the city of Oxford in the year 1273, whilst in 1416, Richard Sterre is recorded as being the vicar of Happesburgh, in Norfolk. Later examples taken from surviving church registers of the diocese of Greater London include: Thomas Sterrye, christened at St Peters church, Westcheap, in 1575, Marie Styrroy who married Richard Holder at St. Johns, Hackney, in 1602, whilst in 1636, Ann Sterry was baptised at St.Leonards church, Shoreditch. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was often 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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