This very unusual name is of French Huguenot origin and is first recorded in England in the early 18th Century. During the late 16th Century and at the end of the 17th Century there was a great influx of French and Flemish Huguenot refugees into England, escaping religious persecution in Europe, particularly following Louis XIV's revocation of the Edict of Nantes in 1685. The name is recorded at first as "Benton" or "Bontot", with the earliest recording of the modern form "Bentote" being that of the christening of "Ann Sarah Bentote" on the 25th December, 1764 at Spitalfields Church. The name would seem to have been a nickname surname for an early riser, from the French "bientot". One "William Bentote" married "Ann Wild" in April 1803 at St. Dunstan's, Stepney. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Judith Bentot, daughter of Jean and Marie, christened, which was dated 6th September 1724, St Jean's, French Huguenot Church, Spitalfields, London, during the reign of King George I, The First Hanoverian, 1714 - 1727. 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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