- This is an English locational surname. It originates from what is now, and has been for several centuries, a district within the city of London, but which in former times, and certainly at the time when surnames began to be created in the 13th century, was a totally separate village. Locational surnames were names given to people after they left their original villages and moved elswhere. This may have been to the very next village, or to another town, but eitherway the easiest manner of identifing a stranger, was to call him, or sometimes, her by the name of the place from whence they came. Spelling being at best erratic and local dialects very thick, lead as with this surname, to the development of alternative spellings. In this case these include: Lambeth, Lamberth and Lambirth. Lambeth village is first recorded in the famous records called the Anglo-Saxon Chronicles for the year 1043, and before the Norman invasion which destroyed "Olde England". At this time the spelling was "Lambehyde", or the wharfe from which lambs were shipped. This probably referred to sheep being brought to London, rather than being taken to the continent, but contra trade existed then, just as it does now, with or without a "Common Market". The surname is believed to have been first recorded in 1332, when Richard de Lambeth, given as being "a citizen of London", was recorded in the registers known as The Feet of Fines. This was a tax assessment which had been made upon him. Later recordings include: Thomas Lamberth, married at St Georges chapel, Hanover Square, to Esther Hagar in 1786, and Mary Lambeth who married Willam Gray at the same church in 1795.
Surnames reference. 2013.
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