Recorded as Churchin, Churchine, Churcheing, and usually Churching, this is quite a rare English surname. It is probably locational from a place called Churchingford (the church by the shallow river crossing) from the pre 7th century 'chirche-forda', in the county of Somerset. If not, it may originate from a now 'lost' medieval village of the same or similar spelling to the surname. It is also just possible although highly unlikely, that the name is some how associated with the the now rare practice of 'churching', a service of so-called purification performed after a birth, but for this suggestion, we cannot find any supporting evidence.It is true though that some 20% of all surnames are nicknames, and that many were given for reasons which are impossible to fully comprehend upto seven centuries after they were originally bestowed. Locational surnames though are usually 'from' names. That is to say names given to people after they left their original homes to move somewhere else. Early examples of recordings taken from surviving registers of the city of London include Roger Churching at St Mary Whitechapel, Stepney, on May 1st 1633, and John Churchine at St Dunstans in the East, also Stepney, on March 26th 1672.
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