This name is of early medieval English origin, and is a good example of that large group of English and continental surnames that were gradually created from the habitual use of a nickname or byname. These were given in the first instance with reference to a person's physical attributes, mental or moral characteristics, fancied similarity to an animal's or bird's appearance or disposition, habits or dress, occupation, and the unusual category of "phrase-names", which grew from the person's frequent use of a phrase such as "Goodyear", and "Pardew", from the French "par Dieu". In this instance, the "nickname" surname Longman, also found as "Langman", was used to distinguish a tall man. It derives from the Middle English, long - tall, from the Old English pre 7th Century "long, lang", with "man(n)", man. The world-famous publishing house of Longman's was founded by Thomas Longman, (1699 - 1755), who bought a bookseller's business in 1724, and gradually bought literary properties. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Alice Longemon, which was dated 1275, in the "Worcestershire Subsidy Rolls", during the reign of King Edward 1, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. 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.