This unusual name is of Anglo-Saxon and Old Norse origin and is found mainly in the northern and north-eastern counties of England. It is a variant form of the name "Westie", itself either a locational surname deriving from "Westhay" in Northamptonshire, or a topographical surname denoting residence near a "western enclosure in a settlement". The placename derives from the Old English pre 7th Century "west", west and "(ge)haeg", forest enclosure, while the topographical name may derive either from this source or from the Old Norse word "vestr", - west(ern), with "(ge)haeg", as before. In some cases the modern surname "Vesty" or "Vestie" may derive from the places called "Westby" in Lancashire, Lincolnshire and Yorkshire, which mean "Western settlement". William Vestie was christened in Belton, Lincolnshire in 1608 and Thomas Vesty married Elizabeth Houmes in July 1654, in Leicester. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Andrew de Westheie, which was dated 1185, Records of the Templars in England, 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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