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BRIDGES Family History

This interesting name, contrary to appearances, has two possible origins, one the perhaps obvious English topographical or occupational one, and the other locational, from Belgium. Firstly, then, the modern surname Bridges or Brydges usually derives from the early Medieval English topographical surname for someone who lived near a bridge, or from a metonymic occupational name for a bridge keeper; building and maintaining bridges was one of the three main feudal obligations in the Middle Ages, the others being the bearing of arms when required and the maintenance of fortifications. The derivation for this source is from the Middle English 'brigge', from the Old English pre 7th Century 'brycg', bridge...

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