Recorded as Deard, Derd, Durd, the diminutives Durden, Durdon, Durdin, Durdon, Dirdy, Durdie and Durdy, the patronymics Deards, Deardes, Derds, Derdes, Durdes and the very rare and possibly extinct Durdson, this is an English medieval surname. It is believed to derive from the pre 6th century Olde French word durd meaning hard, and found in the early personal nickname Durdent. This translates as "Hard Tooth" with one Roger Duredent being recorded in the Register of the Abbey of Bec, Sussex, in 1199, and Nicholas Durdon in the Pipe Rolls of Wiltshire in 1428. Examples of the surname recordings include Elizabeth Derdes at St Mart Colechurch, on September 20th 1600, Magdalen Deards who married Gervice Jones at St Brides Fleet Street, in the city of London on November 27th 1634, whilst Margreta Durdey married Thomas Ragg in Sheffield, Yorkshire, on February 1st 1729. 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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