This rather unusual and interesting surname is of Old French origin, and is from a nickname meaning "good little pet", a term of endearment for a little child, later applied more generally: "Bunting: a term of endearment" (Halliwell); "Buntin, adjective, short and thick, as a buntin brat, a plump child" (Jamieson), here it means "a good healthy child". The name is derived from the Old French "bonnetin, bonneton", from "bonne", good, with the diminutive "-et", and the second diminutive "in" or "on"; this became "buntin", or with the excrescent "g", bunting. The name was probably introduced into England by followers of William the Conqueror after the Norman Conquest of 1066. The surname has survived into the following nursery rhyme: "Baby, baby Bunting, Daddy's gone a hunting, Gone to get a rabbit skin, To wrap his baby Bunting in"; this is strong proof of the names antiquity. Richard Bunting, aged 17 yrs., was an early settler in the New World Colonies, leaving London on the "Dorset" in September 1635, bound for the "Bormodos" (Barbados), and the marriage was recorded in London of Charles Bunting and Elizabeth Chambers on October 20th 1692, at St. James', Clerkenwell. A Coat of Arms granted to the family is described thus: Parted per cross gold and red three birds counterchanged, the Crest being a hand issuing from a cloud erect, holding two branches of laurel in orle. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Hugh Bonting, which was dated 1273, in the "Hundred Rolls of Lincolnshire", during the reign of King Edward 1, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. 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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