This interesting surname is of Cornish origin, and is a locational name from any of the various places so called in Cornwall. The derivation is from the Cornish 'tre', meaning a homestead or settlement, with 'men', stone. The variant spelling Tremain, may also be from the place of that name in Dyfed or Tremains, from a place in Glamorgan, both with the same meaning as above, and deriving from the Welsh 'tre', and 'main'. During the Middle Ages, when it was becoming more usual for people to migrate further afield from their birthplace, often to seek work, they would adopt the placename as a means of identification, thus resulting in a wide dispersal of the name. Among the sample early recordings in Cornwall is the christening of Thomas Tremaine on May 30th 1543 at St. Columb Major, and the marriage of Margareta Tremaine and Thoma Davis on January 30th 1556 at Kilkhampton. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Nicholas Tremeayne, which was dated 1562, Calender of the Patent Rolls of Cornwall, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, 'Good Queen Bess', 1558 - 1603. 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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