This interesting and unusual name is an English locational surname from the village of Wembury in Devonshire. The placename first appears in Monastic Records of Exeter in Henry 1's reign as 'Wenbiria'. The first element of the name is from the Old English pre 7th century 'weoh' meaning 'holy place' or 'heathen temple' and the second from 'burg' or 'burh' meaning a 'fortified place' or 'fort'. As a distinguishing surname the meaning would be 'one who lives near the temple fort'. Locational names were usually given to those who owned land in the area, or who lived there, or who left and went to live or work in another village or town. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Jeane Wimberry which was dated Married Thomas Winchest, 21st April 1674, St. Dunstan in the East, London. during the reign of King Charles II, The Merry Monarch, 1660-1685 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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