Recorded as Daubeney, Daubney, Dabney, Dewdney, Dedney, Dewdeny, Doudney, Doudny, Dowdney, and even d'Oudney, this is a surname of French origins. Our research indicates that it is locational, and was brought into England by the followers of William the Conqueror in 1066, and first recorded in the Domesday Book as shown below. The original name holders came either from St Martin d'Aubigny in La Manche, Normandy, or Aubigny in Calvados. The original name holders were ennobled as the Lords Daubeney and the earls of Bridgewater in or about the year 1295. Their arms have the blazon of a red field, with four silver lozenges conjoined. The crest is a tree with a knights spur. The development of the variant spelling forms of the surname is a result of the change of language and dialect firstly from French in the 13th century, then through medieval English, to the recognizable modern English of the 17th century. Early examples of the recordings include William Daubeney of Berkshire in 1212, and Thomas Dabeney of Suffolk in 1524. Later church recordings include William Dewdney at St Helens Church, Bishopgate, city of London, on August 16th 1629, and Ralph Doudney, whose daughter Anne was christened at the same church on September 11th 1662. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Nigel de Albengi. This was dated 1086, in the Domesday Book for Bedfordshire, during the reign of King William 1st, known as 'The Conqueror', 1066 - 1087. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes known as the 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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