This interesting surname is an English metonymic occupational name for a fishmonger, or possibly a nickname, from the medieval English "sturgeon" (an aphetic form of the Old French "estourgeon", of Germanic origin), a sturgeon being the name of a fish from the family "Acipenseridae", of temperate waters of the Northern Hemisphere having an elongated snout and rows of spines along the body, valued as a source of caviar and isinglass. Richard Sturious (storioun) was recorded in 1327, in the Subsidy Rolls of Essex and a William Sturgeon was listed in 1380, in the "Calendar of letter Books - of the city of London. The church records of London record the following: At St. Margaret's, Westminster, Jone Sturgen married Roger Clarson on June 13th 1540, and at St. Michael Bassishaw, John Sturgeon married Elizabeth Olyver on February 25th, 1565. A notable namebearer was William Sturgeon (1783-1850), who after a period in the army (1802-1820), invented a soft-iron electro-magnet (parent of the dynamo, 1823), and the magneto-electrical machine. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Sturjon, which was dated 1281, "Calendar of Inquisitiones post mortem", Cumberland, during the reign of King Edward 1, "Hammer of the Scots", 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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