- Although this name is accepted as being Scottish, the origin is believed to be Yorkshire where in the original dialect 'Mar' described 'Marshy or Reedy Ground'. Be that as it may the Marr name has been prominent in Scottish history since the first 13th century recordings John de Mar being Baillie of Linlithgow in 1296, David de Marre (as spelt) being the Kings Messenger in 1327, whilst John Marre (died 1407) was the head of the Carmelite Convent in Doncaster, perhaps re-newing the Yorkshire connection.The Coat of Arms most associated with the family if that of the Earl of Mar, which has the blazon of on a silver shield a cross between six red cross crosslets fitchee. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William de Mar, which was dated 1235, who was a Charter Witness, at Kelso Abbey, during the reign of King Alexander 11 of Scotland, 1214 - 1249. 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.
Surnames reference. 2013.