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Laurance Family History
Family spelling variants include Laurence, Laurens, Lawrance, Laurance, Lawerence, Lawerance, Lowrance, Lorence, Lorance, Lorenz.
There are approximately 129,455 Lawrence family members around the world. In general you can double this figure to include those related to the Lawrence names to allow for those connected to the name through maiden name connections.
It is estimated that the largest group of Lawrence family members live in England with 46,857 (36.2%) members, USA with 34,759 (26.9%), Australia with 17,079 (13.2%), South Africa with 16,115 (12.4%), Canada with 5,048 (3.9%), New Zealand with 3,684 (2.8%), Wales with 2,706 (2.1%), Scotland with 2,169 (1.7%) and Ireland with 1,044 (0.8%) members.
An English relationship name from the Middle English and Old French personal name Lorens, Laurence (Latin Laurentius ‘man from Laurentum’), a place in Italy probably named from its laurels or bay trees. However spelt the ultimate surname derives from the male given name "Laurentius", which itself originates from Laurentium, the "city of laurels" in Italy.
There was also a feminine form Laurencia which may have given rise to a surname.
Early bearers of the surname include: John Lorence, 1268 in Feet of Fines (Suffolk); Benedict Laurenz, 1292 in Feet of Fines (Hunts); John Laurens, William Lorens, 1296 in Subsidy Rolls (Sussex); Reginaldo Laurence, 1327 in Subsidy Rolls (East Horndon, Essex); William Lourance, 1374, Lucus Lowrance, 1481 in York Freemen’s Register (Yorks); Stephano Laurens, 1377 in Poll Tax (Kent); John Laurence, 1427 in Feet of Fines (Headcorn, Kent); Willmi Lawrance, 1539 in IGI (Saint Bees, Cumb); Isabell Laurence, 1541 in IGI (Farnham, Surrey); Marye Lorence, 1599 in IGI (Mumby, Lincs).
In 1891 census, the surname was recorded in England and Wales with 22,098 occurrences and a further 1,049 in Scotland.
In 1881 census, the surname was frequent in England, especially London. Cambridgeshire was also reported as a top county for the surname with 248 occurrences.
In 1881, the most common Lawrence occupation in the UK was Agricultural Labourer, along with Labourer and Farmer reported as the top 3 jobs worked by Lawrence. A less common occupation was Carpenter.
The noted, Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Edward "T.E." Lawrence CB, DSO (1888-1935), also known as Lawrence of Arabia, was British archaeologist, military officer, diplomat, and writer.
1881, 1891 Census
1881 Census in Cambridgeshire
Dictionary of American Family Homes, P Hanks OUP 2003
Homes of Family Names in Great Britain, H.B. Guppy, London 1890
The Oxford Dictionary of Family Names in Britain and Ireland, P.Hanks, Coats, McClure OUP 2016
1860 Lower, Mark A Patronymica Britannica: a dictionary of the family names of the United Kingdom, London: J.R Smith. Public Domain
1857 Arthur, William An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. New York: Sheldon, Blakeman. Public Domain
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