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This name is of medieval Welsh origin, and is a Welsh patronymic form of the personal name "Hugh", originally written as "ap Hugh", as in the first recording below, where "ap" means "son of", and over the years has been reduced and contracted to form "Pugh", with the variants "Pughe" or "Pew". The male personal name "Hugh" was introduced into Britain by the Normans in the form of "Hu(gh)e", after the Conquest of 1066. In origin "Hugh" is a short form of any of the various Germanic compound names with the first element "hug", heart, mind, spirit, such as "Howard", or "Hubert". The variant "Pew" derives from the form "Hew". One John Apew is recorded in the "Peacock's Army list of Roundheads and Cavaliers" of 1642. William Pugh and Martha Whiting were married at St. James's, Dukes Place, London, on the May 22nd 1688. Ellis Pugh (1656 - 1721) emigrated to Pennsylvania in 1686, where he published the first Welsh book printed in America in 1721. A Coat of Arms was granted to a Pugh family resident at Wanerchydol, Co. Montgomery, depicting quarterly first and fourth, silver a black lion passant with a gold crown, between three red fleurs-de-lis; second and third, black, with three silver greyhounds. The Motto, "Qui invidet minor est", translates as, "He who envies is inferior". The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard ap Hughe, which was dated 1563, in the "Ancient Deeds of Montgomery", during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, known as "Good Queen Bess", 1558 - 1603. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.

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