This unusual and interesting surname, now recorded as Abdee, Abdy, Abdey, and Abdie, is of early medieval English origins. However it may also be said to have French, Latin (Roman), Greek, and Aramaic antecedents. It is either a topographical name for someone living by a abbey, or from a place called 'Abdy', apparently a medieval estate in Yorkshire. Derived from the Middle English 'abbodie', itself from the Old French 'abeie', and the Latin 'abbatia', the translation is 'The priest's house'. This is a derivative of the Greek 'abbas' meaning priest, itself a development from the Aramaic 'aba' meaning 'The father'. Ralph Abbod was a witness at the Somerset Assize Courts in the year 1272, but it is now generally accepted that the first 'true' recordings are in Yorkshire, and all from the same small village. These recordings include (quote) 'Johannes del Abdy, et Agnes, uxor ejus, taylour', in the 1379 Poll Tax rolls, and 'Johannes del Abdy et Margareta', with the first recording shown below, all of 'Brampton-juxta-Wath'. In 1577 Edmund Abdie of London was registered as a student at Oxford University, and John Abdee and Mary Wharum, married on December 7th 1708, at Rotherham, Yorkshire. Sir William Adby, Bt, married Miss Mary Gordon at St Georges chapel, Hanover Square, London, on May 7th 1776, whilst the coat of arms granted in Yorkshire & Essex has the blazon of a gold field, charged with two chevrons between three trefoils slipped, all black. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert del Abdy, which was dated 1379, in the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls, during the reign of King Richard 11, known as 'Richard of Bordeaux', 1377 - 1399. 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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