英文姓氏辞典

English Surname Dictionary

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Rarity

This very unusual surname recorded as Raraty and Rarity and possibly others, is aptly spelt. It is 'rare', and its origins have proved to be elusive. Our researches appear to show that it was first recorded in London, England, in the year 1804, at the height of the famous Napoleonic Wars of 1795 to 1815, however this is many centuries too late for it to be an original spelling, or so one would think. Hereditary surnames were created in England and Scotland mainly in the 13th century. These were the first countries in the world to adopt such a means of identification, although they were shortly followed by Germany, France and Ireland. In our opinion this surname may well be a variant form of some Irish surname, since it was about this date in the early 19th century that Irish immgration to both England and America really started in earnest. If this is correct, then it would be a question of which name. A possibility is Raverty or even Garrity, but we are plucking at straws. What is certain is that even as late as 1805 less than twenty percent of the population of England could both spell and write their names, and in Ireland it was even lower. Examples of the early surname recordings include David Raraty who married Hannah Stroud at St Mary Magdalene, Bermondsey, on June 14th 1805, whilst a year later another David, the son of Thomas Rarity, David was christened at St Marys Rotherhithe, on May 5th 1805