This unusual name is one of the diminutive forms of the male or female personal names found as "Jan, Jon or Jen", themselves short or "pet" forms of the male personal name "John". The original name is derived from the Hebrew "Yochanan", meaning "God has favoured (me with a son)", which was adopted into Latin as "Johannes", and became one of the most popular medieval given names, second only to "William". A great many variant forms of both personal and surnames were generated from "Joh"; the short forms "Jan, Jon and Jane" when suffixed with the diminutive "-in" produced the modern surnames Jennings, Jannens, Jennins, Jenings, Jenyuns, Jannings, Janin and Jouning.The development of the surname includes Jannen (1327), Janyng (1327) and Jenyn (1528). One Thomas Jouning married Eliza Dantree at St. James's, Clerkenwell, London on September 10th 1657. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Roger Jonyng, which was dated 1296, in the "Sussex Subsidy Rolls", during the reign of King Edward 1, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. 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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