The growing of vines in England dates back to the Roman period, and from the time of the Norman Invasion (1066) until the 16th Century, remained a flourishing industry. In consequence a number of occupational surnames were developed including Vine, Viner, Vyner and Vigne, and some may also be residential from such places as Vineyard in Hereford, Essex and Cambridge. The original derivation is from the French Vignour, Vigneur or Vigneor, and both the occupation and the surname have long held aristocratic associations, an example being Sir Thomas Viner (1588 - 1665), Lord Mayor of London in 1653 during the Commonwealth Administration of Oliver Cromwell. Sir Thomas was one of the group which arranged the return of Charles 11 in 1660, his nephew and partner Sir Robert Viner being Lord Mayor of London in 1674. Name recordings include: William le Vinyour in the Hundred Rolls of Huntingdon in 1279; William le Vynour of London in 1309; and John Vyner of Sussex in 1407. An interesting recording occurred on March 10th 1678, when one Anthony Viner was granted a ticket to travel on the ship "James" of London, bound for Antigua, having taken the "oath of allegiance" to Charles 11. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert le Vinnour, which was dated 1207, in the "Curia Regis Rolls of Huntingdonshire", during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. 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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