This name, with variant spelling Clingen, is an Anglicized form of the Scottish Gaelic MacClingan. The Gaelic prefix "mac" means "son of", plus the personal byname Clingan, a compound of "Cling", to tinkle or ring, plus the agent suffix "an" i.e. one who does. The byname was probably originally applied to a bell ringer, or perhaps to someone with a "ring" in his voice. The surnames McClingen and M'Clengen were recorded in "Parish lists of Wigtownshire and Minnigaff" under the date 1684, and an Alexander Clingane, noted in "the Register of the Privy Council of Scotland", signed an act passed in the Scottish parliament 1681, which acknowledged that the English King was supreme in all causes. On June 13th 1825, Martha Clingan, an infant, was christened in Edinburgh and on March 13th 1855 the birth of one, Thomas Clingan was recorded in Mayhole, Ayrshire. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Clingane, of Ladieland, which was dated 1658 - "The commissariot record of Dumfries", during the reign of Oliver Cromwell, "The Lord Protector", 1649 - 1658. 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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