1) A short form of ‘essoiner’, that is the man who excused the non-attendance of another at the manor court.
The evidence suggests that some men, possibly with legal training, did this regularly enough for it to be seen as their ‘office’ or occupation, as in the case of a Wharfedale man: 1297-8 Et Alano le Soignour
1308-9 Pro j equo vendito Alano essoniatori, Bolton Priory
1323-4 ‘Adam son of Alan Soygnour’, Nesfield. It was not uncommon in the south Pennine parishes where it is likely to be one source of Senior as a surname, conceivably the major source: 1307 William le Soyngur, Flockton
1379 Thomas Soignour, Flockton
1391 ‘Thomas del Overhall of Flocton, soignour'. Possibly belonging here also is: 1421 Thomas Lyndesay, synyar, York.