This most interesting surname is locational. Its origins are Olde English, and it derives from the village in Shropshire called 'Bedstone'. In the 1086 Domesday Book, 'Bedstone' is recorded in the spelling of 'Betietune', the meaning being 'the place of' (tun) either 'Beda' or 'Bedgeat' both being popular baptismal names of the pre 9th century. The variant spellings are found in several forms, indeed it is arguable as to which is the base spelling. As shown in the recording examples below, the first spelling, although very rare is as 'Bedton', which seems to be the Shopshire form, but as nameholders moved east over the centuries towards London, the spelling changed to 'Badstone' and 'Batstone' as it was influenced by prevailing local dialects on its journey. The final form as 'Batstone' is relatively popular in the Home Counties region, and particularly London, but seems to be rarely found elsewhere in the United Kingdom. Examples of the recordings include Anne Bedton (see below), Sarah Badstone, who married John Sayward at St James Church, Dukes Place, London, on Christmas Day 1712, in the reign of Queen Anne, and Cornelius Batstone, who married Mary Bass at St Lukes Church, Old Street, Finsbury, London, on July 4th 1757. Other variants include Charles Bedelson, recorded at Bridgenorth, Shropshire on August 23rd 1732, and Mary Bedelston of Shifnal, Shropshire on May 5th 1831. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Anne Bedton, which was dated February 2nd 1577, who married Peter Lewis at Ludlow, Salop, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, known as '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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