This unusual name is locational and derives as a variant from one of the places associated with 'Roman' roads. The origination is from the Olde English 'Straete' (a road) plus the suffix 'ham' (homestead) or tun a farm, as found in the place names Streatham or Stratton. The modern spelling which dates from the 18th Century is a dialectual transposition resulting from the Middle English slurring of the consonants i.e. 'Th' to 'ff'. The name development includes Elizabeth Strafen who married Richard Major at St. Katherines by the Tower in 1748, and Alice Straffon who married Edward Jaruis at Tottenham on the 29th January 1770. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert Striffen, which was dated 1714, christened at St. James Church Clerkenwell on Christmas Day, during the reign of Queen Anne, 'The Last Stuart Monarch', 1702 -1714. 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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