Salisbury Family History
Salisbury Name Meaning
English (Lancashire): habitational name primarily from Salesbury in Blackburn (Lancashire) but also occasionally from Salisbury (Wiltshire). The Lancashire placename derives from Old English salh ‘willow sallow’ + burg ‘fortress’ while the Wiltshire placename arises from a shortened form of the Celtic placename Sorviodunum (from an unknown initial element + Celtic dūno- ‘fort’). In the Old English period the second element was dropped and Sorvio- (of unexplained etymology) became Searo- in Old English as the result of folk etymological association the Old English word searu ‘trick’; to this an explanatory burh ‘fortress manor town’ was added. The city is recorded in the Domesday Book as Sarisberie; the change of -r- to -l- is the result of later dissimilation.
Source: Dictionary of American Family Names ©2013, Oxford University Press