- This unusual and interesting surname derives from the Norman personal name "Ivo", a short form of any of the various Germanic compound names with a first element "iv", from the Old Norse "yr", plural "ifar" meaning yew, bow, a weapon generally made from the supple wood of the yew tree. The name was introduced into England at the time of the Conquest, and enjoyed great popularity, reinforced by such bearers of the name as St. Ivo, Bishop of Chartres, and a 13th Century Breton, St. Ivo, who became the patron saint of lawyers. St. Ives in Cambridgeshire takes its name from the church dedicated to a legendary Persian bishop, said to have lived there as a hermit. St. Ives, in Cornwall, however, is named from a 5th Century female Irish saint. "Ives" is the patronymic form of the name Ive, the "s" meaning son of. The surname dates back to the late 12th Century (see below), and early recordings include John Ives (1327) in the Subsidy Rolls of Sussex. London Church Records list the christening of Joyce, daughter of Richarde Ives, on January 24th 1588 at St. Giles, Cripplegate. A Coat of Arms granted to an Ives family is silver, a black chevron between three blackamoors' heads couped proper. The Crest is a boar passant proper, gold collared and chained. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Roger Yuo, which was dated 1175, in the "Pipe Rolls of Lincolnshire", during the reign of King Henry 11, known as "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.
Surnames reference. 2013.
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