name change #names

Richard Gross

12 March 2020

I wonder if anyone could shed light on why my husband’s relative, Solomon Israel, suddenly changed his surname to Sloman sometime between the births of his children, Israel Israel born about 1826, Elias Israel born about 1830, Rachel Israel born about 1835, Sarah Sloman born about 1837, Jacob Sloman born about 1839 and Jessie Sloman born about 1842, all in London, Middlesex.

In the Leeds Database he’s listed as Solomon Israel later Sloman.

In 1941 Solomon was an artist known as Sol Isreal but in the following censuses he’s recorded as a chiropodist/surgeon.

All the details of Solomon and his wife, Mary nee Polack, are the parents of all the children who are definitely part of the family but why the name was changed is a mystery. My husband suggests that it may have been due to antisemitism. However

Would this have been done legally and if so where could I find proof. If not, how would the family have ‘advertised’ the change?

Looking forward to replies from all and sundry.



In your 3rd paragraph, I think you mean 1841. There was no census in 1941 due to WWII.

Name changes in the UK are not a matter of law unless done by 'deed poll'. If that method was chosen by your ancestor there would have been an announcement, at that time, in the London Gazette.

As to the reason for the change, who knows? Antisemitism is a possible explanation, but it would have been a personal decision by your ancestor that has been lost in the mists of time.

Henry Best,
London, UK


Name changes in the UK were made by deed poll through a lawyer.
The new name would be advertised in The London Gazette... this can be searched on-line through genealogical sites.

Eva Lawrence

Legal changes of name were advertised in The London Gazette, which was published weekly and is available online,  though not indexed. They were cone by Deed Poll.
The more likely explanation is that until 1837 the only way to register marriages and births was through a religious institution..

In 1837 civil registration was introduced in England., which seems to  be what caused you Solomon Israel's children's  name change. Possibly the last name Israel was a patronymic.  Are you sure that his  name was not in fact Israel Solomon ? This would make sense of the early children's names as patronymics, eg Elias ben  Israel (Elias son of Israel). Then after 1837, the civil registration  would require  children to have the same last name as their father, i.e Solomon or the shorter version, Sloman..
To check on the correct version of the father's name, you'll need to look at his personal signature or perhaps, the inscription on his grave 
Eva Lawrence
St Albans, UK.