Last name: Valentine
This interesting surname is of English and Scottish origin, and is from a medieval given name, derived from the Latin "Valentinus", a derivative of "valere", to be strong, healthy. The personal name was never common in England until the end of the 12th Century; this was probably a result of French influence. The name was borne by a 3rd Century saint and martyr, whose feast falls on February 14th, the date of a traditional celebration of spring going back to the Roman fertility festival of Juno Februata. The first recording of the personal name was in the Curia Rolls for Wiltshire in 1198, as "Valentinus", and the surname was first recorded in the mid 13th Century (see below). In the modern idiom the surname can be found recorded as Valentine, Val(l)entin, Vallentine, Val(l)intine, Wallentin and Valentin. Recordings from London Church Registers include: the marriage of Alexander Valentine and Sarah Hackman on September 18th 1723, at St. Katherine in the Tower, and the marriage of Donald Valentine and Ealer Boyd on February 14th 1741, at St. George's, Hanover Square, Westminster. A Coat of Arms granted to a family of the name from Hereford is a black shield, on a silver chevron three black lions' heads erased, the Crest being an ermine demi pegasus salient and erased enfiled on the body with a gold ducal coronet. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Matilda Valentyn, which was dated 1251, in the "Pipe Rolls of Huntingdonshire", during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. 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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