This unusual name is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a locational surname deriving from the place called "Crathorne" in North Yorkshire. The placename is recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086 as "Cratorne", and in the Yorkshire Charters of 1170 as "Crathorn", and means "the crakes" thorn-bush", derived from the Old English pre 7th Century "crach", water-crake, a type of rail, with "thorn", thorn-bush". Another placename with the same meaning and derivation is "Crakethorn" near Ebberston in North Yorkshire.Locational surnames were usually acquired by the lord of the manor, and especially by those former inhabitants of a place who moved to another area, and were best identified by the name of their birthplace. The modern surname can be found as Crathorne and as Craythorn(e). The marriage of Thomas Craythorne and Elizabeth Robinson was recorded at Brantingham, Yorkshire, on June 24th 1719. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Ellen Crathorne (christening), which was dated May 29th 1584, in Egglescliff, County Durham, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, known as "Good Queen Bess", 1558 - 1603. 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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