This surname BRAMES of the locational group of names derived from Braham, a small spot in the West Riding of Yorkshire. There is also Braham Farm in Cambridge, and Brantham in Sussex, from whence the name may have been taken. The name was anciently spelt BRAMHAMM, and literally meant one who lived by the Broom-covered hill. During the middle ages it was customary for a man to be named from the village where he lived, or from the land that he owned. This name would identify his whole family and followed them wherever they moved. The earliest of the name on record appears to be BRAM (without surname) who was listed in the Domesday Book of 1086. BRAHAM (without surname) appears in the West Riding of Yorkshire in 1242. Eustace de Braham was recorded in 1189 in County Essex, and Mathew de Brameham appears in County Yorkshire in 1219. Roger de Breem appears in County Suffolk in 1273, and Roger de Bream in London in 1280. Agnes de Brame of Yorkshire was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. Since the dawn of civilisation the need to communicate has been a prime drive of all higher mankind. The more organised the social structure became, the more urgent the need to name places, objects and situations essential to the survival and existence of the social unit. From this common stem arose the requirements to identify families, tribes and individual members evolving into a pattern in evidence today. In the formation of this history, common usage of customs, trades, locations, patronymic and generic terms were often adopted as surnames. The demands of bureaucracy formally introduced by feudal lords in the 11th century, to define the boundaries and families within their fiefdoms, crystallized the need for personal identification and accountability, and surnames became in general use from this time onwards. A notable member of the name was John Braham (1774-1856) the English tenor, born in London. He had his first great success at Drury Lane in 1796, and for half a century held the reputation of being one of the world's greatest tenors. He squandered a fortune by purchasing the Colosseum in Regent's Park and building the St. Jame's Theatre. John Gray and Hannah Braham were married at St. George's, Hanover Square, London in 1805.
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