This unusual and interesting name is a variant form of the more familiar "Travers", which is a medieval English and French topographical or occupational surname. As the former, it denotes residence by a bridge or a ford and as the latter it was the name for a toll-gatherer at places where people has to pass through a gate or across a river. The derivation is from the Olde French "Travers", passage, from "Traverser", to cross in Middle English "Travers" and later "Travas, Traves and Travis". In 1285 the Bishop of Norwich claimed the right to take a certain "Travers" at South Elmham in Suffolk from foreign merchants, for the upkeep of the bridge.The modern surname refers to the toll and collectors. John Treves married Eme Parkins on the 1st of December 1588 at St. Mary, Somerset, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert Traves, which was dated circa 1154, Documents Relating to the Danelaw, London, during the reign of King Henry II, The Builder of Churches, 1154 - 1189. 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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