This most interesting surname of Old French origin, is a variant of "Bastide", which is a habitation name from the Old Provencal (French) word "bastide", building, from the Late Latin "bastita", to build, of Germanic origin. This term was used in particular to describe a number of small fortified villages that were established in the 13th and 14th Centuries, and were inhabited by free citizens. Other variant spellings of the name include La Batie and Labastida. Topographical surnames were among the earliest created, since both natural and man-made features in the landscape provided easily recognisable distinguishing names in the small communities of the Middle Ages. John, son of Peter Bastey was christened on January 17th 1591 at St. Margaret's, Westminster, London. Margarett Bastie married Zacharias Jone on October 12th 1620 at St. Mary Abchurch, London. The marriage of Marguerite Bastie and Francois Gauthier took place on June 18th 1766 at Nitting, Moselle in France. Coats of Arms were granted to French families called (de la) Bastie, in Lyonnais, Bastie de Bez in Languedoc and Bastie de Vercel. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Peter Bastey, which was dated November 3rd 1588, christening witness at St. Margaret's, Westminster, London, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1st, "Good Queen Bess", 1558-1603. 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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