Fairbridge - what does Fairbridge surname mean?

This unusual name has had many changes of spelling from its origin in the pre medieval period i.e. before the 1066 Norman Invasions. What is absolutely certain is that the origin has nothing whatsoever to do with a `Fair bridge`, a name not recorded before the 18th Century. The previous `link` spelling is `Farbridge` which is also an existent surname spelling, and the next `link` back is to `Forbridge` (circa 1620) and this the crital spelling. The surname almost certainly has the same root origin as the Hampshire town of `Fording bridge`, first recorded in the 1086 Domesday book and translating as the bridge of the Ford people (ing) with ford being either locational or personal. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Immanuel Fairbridge, which was dated 1780, christened at St. Lukes, Old Street, London, during the reign of King George III, `Farmer George`, 1760 - 1820. 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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