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This interesting and unusual name, with variant spellings Wear, Were, Where etc. derives from two possible origins. Firstly, it may be topographical for a dweller by a dam, or keeper of a fishing-weir, from the Old English word "wer", weir, dam, fish-trap. It may also be topographic for someone who lived by the North English river "Wear", called "Vedra" in Ptolemy's "Geographina", a Celtic word meaning simply water. Finally the name is also found in Scotland where it is believed to be of Norman origin from various places in Calvados, Manche, Eure-et-Loire and Orne called "Vere", ultimately from the Old Norse element "Ver", dam...

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