Recorded in many forms including Ailet, Aylet, Elyat, Elyatt, Ellyatt, Illet, Illett, and Illot, his unusual and interesting diminutive surname is English. It has at least two possible medieval origins, both from personal names. The first of these is from "Elis or Ellis", itself the vernacular form of the Hebrew and biblical name "Elijah", meaning Jehovah is God, and introduced into Europe by returning Crusaders of the 12th century.The second source is from the English and Scottish medieval given name Elyat or Elyt, which represents at least two Old English pre 7th century personal names, which have coalesced.The first is the male name "Adthelgeat", meaning "noble gate", and the second the female name "Adthelgydth", meaning "noble battle". These names are recorded in the famous Domesday Book of 1086 as Ailiet and Aliet. An early example of the surname recording taken from the surviving church registers of the diocese of Greater London is that of the marriage between Agnes Ilett and Robert Brantley on the January 16th 1604 at St. James church, Clerkenwell. The first recorded spelling of the family name is believed to be that of Boydin Ailet. This was dated 1212, in the Fees Court records of the county of Essex, during the reign of King John of England, 1199 - 1216. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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