This unusual name has two possible origins, both from old personal names. The first and most generally applicable to bearers of the modern-day surname is a diminutive form of the medieval given name 'Battle', itself a diminutive of 'Bartholomew', derived from the Aramaic patronymic 'bartalmay'. The name means 'having many furrows' and therefore 'rich in land'. Bartholomew was a very popular personal name in the Middle Ages, partly due to the fame of St. Bartholomew, the patron saint of tanners, vintners and butlers. There are literally hundreds of European surnames from 'Bartholomew', among them the English forms 'Batten', 'Battin(g)' and 'Baton'. On April 22nd 1593, Ann, daughter of William Battey was christened at St. Nicholas Cole Abbey, London. Alice, daughter of Richard and Clare Battey was christened on August 24th 1621 St. Bride, Fleet Street, London. Ann Battey married Walter Pember on September 5th 1622 at St. Dunstan's, Stepney. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Walter Batun, witness, which was dated 1248, Fines Court Records of Essex, during the reign of King Henry 111, '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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