Last name: Ainsworth
This surname, of Anglo-Saxon origin, is a locational name from a place called Ainsworth in Lancashire, which is recorded as "Hainewrthe", circa 1200 in the Pipe Rolls of Lancashire, and as "Aynesworth" in the Assize Court Rolls of 1285. The placename is composed of the Olde English pre 7th Century personal name "Aegen", from "aegen" meaning own, plus "worth", a homestead; hence, "Aegen's homestead". The surname dates back to the early 14th Century (see below), and early recordings include John de Aynesworth, who appears in Baines "History of Lancashire" in 1370. Church Records list the christening of Richard Ainsworth on July 25th 1567, in Winwick, Lancashire. One Robert Ainsworth (1660 - 1743) was educated at Botton, and published a much acclaimed treatise on education in 1698; he also compiled a Latin-English dictionary in 1736. A Coat of Arms granted to an Ainsworth family of Spotland, Lancashire is red with three silver battleaxes. The Crest is a man at arms in complete armour holding his right hand arm extended a battleaxe all proper. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William de Aynesworth, which was dated 1332, in the "Lay Subsidy Rolls of Lancashire", during the reign of King Edward 111, known as "The Father of the Navy", 1327 - 1377. 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.
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