This interesting surname has two distinct possible origins. Firstly, it may be a diminutive of Codd, itself being a metonymic occupational name, either for a maker of purses and bags, deriving from the Old English pre 7th Century "cod" meaning bag, or for a fishmonger, from the Middle English "cod" meaning cod (the fish). It may also have originated from the Old French "ceur de lion" meaning lion heart, and would have been used as a nickname for a brave man or ironically for an exceptionally timorous one.The surname is first recorded in the early 13th Century, (see below). One, Robert codling, is noted in the Hundred Rolls of Lincolnshire, (1275). In the modern idiom the surname has many spelling variations depending on where it is found e.g. Codling is common in Yorkshire, Quodling and Quadling are Norfolk and Suffolk names, whilst Girling and Gurling, particularly common in Suffolk, are frequent also in Essex and Norfolk. On November 14th 1715, Alice Codling married John Millward, at St. Dunstan, Stepney, London, and the marriage of Catharine Codling and William Hunneman took place on August 20th 1738, at Hutton Rudby, Yorkshire. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Kodling, which was dated 1208, in the "Curia Regis Rolls" of Yorkshire, during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. 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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