SAYER FAMILY HISTORY
POTENTIAL ORIGINS AND DISTRIBUTION OF THE SAYER NAME
A number of potential origins for the Sayer and related names (Sayers, Sa(y)re, Se(e)ar(s), Surr) have been outlined in the literature :
|1||From the ME personal name Saher or Seir, probably a Norman introduction of the Germanic personal name Sigiheri|
|2||From a variant of the occupational names saghier (Sawyer) or seieor (Sewer, shoemaker)|
|3||From an occupational name for a professional reciter, from ME say(en)|
|4||From an occupational name for a tester (of metals or food), from ME assayer|
|5||From an occupational name for a seller of say (silk, serge) cloth|
|6||From the Welsh occupational name for a carpenter, saer|
The Sayer family were notable in the history of Norfolk, and it seems likely that a number of Norman families of this name settled in England.
By 1881, the Sayer name (including the main variants) was very much concentrated in the south-east of England, with almost 70% of instances occurring in London, East Anglia and the Home Counties. Away from this region, the name was fairly thinly spread, although there were notable pockets in the north-east (around 10% of instances) and in the south-west Midlands (around 5%). The name was uncommon in Scotland.
This page was last updated 14 January 2003