This Olde Scottish name which has many spelling variants derives from the Barony of Crichton in Midlothian. The name is of Old British origin and dates from around the 8th century A.D. translating as 'the farm (tun) on the hill (cruc)'. Topographical surnames were among the earliest created, since both natural and man made features in the landscape provided easily recognisable distinguishing names in the small communities of the Middle Ages. The name development includes Turstan de Crectune who was a charter witness on behalf of King David II of Scotland c. 1128, whilst in 1451 Robet de Crichtoun was a negotiator of a truce with England. The name appears in England in the 16th century whilst Marie Creaton is recorded in 1642 and Margaret Criton in 1681 both in London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Critten. which was dated 1790 (Baptised) at St. Matthews, Bethnal Green. during the reign of King George 111, known as "Farmer George" 1760 - 1820. 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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