We certainly did not expect to find this German surname relatively well recorded in England, at least as far back as the middle years of the 19th century. It has retained its near original spelling, through two world wars, although in fact in Germany the spelling seems to be either Wermering or Wermling. Either way the name is a patronymic of the well known baptismal name "Wermer" which itself derives from the medieval and earlier Warmilo and Warinbert. The name translates from the pre 7th century as Warin meaning guard and beorht - brave, the Brave Guard, a meaning which no doubt contributed to its popularity. Certainly as shown below, the name has been found for many centuries in its native land, and as to why it appeared in England is outside the scope of this research. The various recordings include the following examples taken from both Germany and England. Bernhard Wermeling who married Elsgen Brandts on October 28th 1654, and Enne Wermling who married Johan Wuestman at Burgensteinfurt, Province of Westfalen, on November 25th 1685. This town would seem to be the epicentre of the surname, in all its spellings. In England the name seems to have developed from one family, certainly the first recording is that of Mary Wermerling who married James Johnson at the famous church of St Dunstans in the East on December 28th 1848. A curiosity is that on April 4th 1852, a Mary Ann Wermerling married Henry Hooper Cannon. Was this the same Mary? The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Herman Wermeling, which was dated May 7th 1671, a christening witness at Burgensteinfurt, Westfalen, Germany, during the reign of Emperor Leopold 1 of the German Empire, 1658 - 1705. 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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