Amongst the original followers of William the Conqueror at the 1066 invasion of England was William de Anesi, from the village of that name in Calvados, Normandy. He was later granted extensive land holdings in Hampshire and Wiltshire, and his name is perpetuated in the village of Winterbourne Dauntsey. The 1242 Fees Rolls of Wiltshire records that the village was held by Roger Dauntsey. Even by this date the name had developed several spellings, such as Dantesia, De Dantesie, De Andisie and De Anesy, the first "modern" form probably being that of Roger Danesi, in the Kent Rolls of 1210. Other recordings include: Peter de Dauntesy, of Berkshire in 1273, and Richard de Dauntesye in Wiltshire in the same period. Later recordings show the modern forms: Johane Dauncy being registered at St. Antholin's Church, London, in 1539, and in 1542 "Mistress" Dancy, the wife of Alderman Dancy, was buried in London. Amongst the earliest settlers to America was John Dancy, recorded in the Virginia Muster of 1621, in the company of George Sandis Esq. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William de Anesi, which was dated 1086, in the Domesday Book of Wiltshire, during the reign of King William 1, known as "The Conqueror", 1066 - 1087. 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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