Last name: Powton
Recorded in an very wide range of spellings including Pudan, Puddan, Puden, Pudden, Puddin, Pudding, Puttan, Putten, Powton, Putton and no doubt others, this is an English surname. Despite the exotic nature of many of the spellings we believe that this is a locational surname from a place such as Puddington, a village in the county of Devonshire, or the two villages called Puttenham in Surrey, or more likely from a now "lost" medieval village. Some three thousand surnames of the British Isles are known to originate from such sources, of which the only public reminder even of its existence, is the surviving surname, usually as with this one, in a wide variety of spellings. Locational surnames were given either to the lord of the manor or his descendants, or to former inhabitants who for whatever reason, left their village and moved elsewhere. The easiest way to identify such strangers was to call him, or sometimes her, by the name of the place from whence they came. Spelling being at best indifferent, and local dialects very thick, often lead to the development of "sounds like" spellings. In this case early examples of the recordings taken from surviving church registers in the diocese of Greater London include: Jhon Pouton who married Margery Gunton at St Mary Aldermary on November 20th 1541, Sarah Putton christened at St Brides Fleet Street, on January 17th 1657, William Puden, a witness at St Dunstans in the East, Stepney, on December 4th 1697, and Alexander Puddan, a witness at St Mary's Battersea, on May 27th 1843, and as Alexander Pudan at the same church, on June 13th 1847.
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