This unusual name can be either locational or topographical in origin, both sources having the same derivation and therefore the same meaning i.e. "the cattle sheds". The derivation is from the Old English pre 7th Century "byrum, from "byre", a barn or byre. The surname can therefore mean either "dweller at the cattle byres", or be an occupatioinal name for one who worked there, a cowman. The placename "Byram" in West Yorkshire (first recorded as "Byrum" in the Anglo - Saxon Chronicle of c.1030) also means "place of the Cattlesheds". The surname "Byron", made famous particularly by the poet Lord George Byron (1788 - 1824), is a variant of "Byrom", which is also found as "Byram, Biram, Biron and Byran". The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Roger de Birum (witness). which was dated 1240, in the Fines Court Rolls, Yorkshire. during the reign of King Henry 111, known as the Frenchman, 1216 - 1272. 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.