Recorded in many forms as shown below, this is an early medieval English surname. It is a good example of that sizeable group of early European surnames that were gradually created from the habitual use of nicknames. These were given for various reasons including occupation, physical attributes and even habits of dress. In this instance the nickname is for a swift runner, probably a winner of sports or possibly an official messenger. The derivation is from the Olde English word "scheren", meaning to cut through, and the suffix "wind", to give a meaning of 'one who cuts through the wind!' The German surname "Schneidewind" provides a parallel.In the modern idiom the surname can be found as Sharven, Sharvin, Sharwin, Sherwin, Sherwen, Sherrin, Sherwyn, Sheryne and Sheryn. Early recordings of the surname from surviving church registers include: the christening of Edward Sherwyn, on October 20th 1588, at St. James Clerkenwell, the christening of Jane Sheryne, on December 5th 1613, at St. Mary Magdalene, and the marriage of Elizabeth Sharvin to Ropwland Jones T Christ Church, Greyfriars, on December 31st 1727. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Scherewind. This was was dated 1187, in the Pipe Rolls of Cumberland, during the reign of King Henry 11, known as "The Builder of Churches", 1154 - 1189. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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