This interesting name now chiefly found in Scotland, derives from Dobb. a pet form of Robert, with the diminutive suffix-ey. Robert is a Germanic personal name composed of the elements "hrod" renown and "berht" bright, famous. Some of the earliest recordings include Dobbei (without surname) recorded in 1212, in the curia Rolls of Yorkshire. Walter Doby, recorded in the Subsidy Rolls of Worcestershire 1327, and Thomas Doby elder who resigned the feu of his land in 1471, William Doby was witness in Dumfries in 1542 and Mary Dobey daughter of William and Margarett Dobey was christened on March 10th 1688 at St. Botolph's without Aldgate. In the "modern" idiom the name is also found as Dob(b)ie, Dob(b)y Dobkin, Dobbin(g), Dobbyn, Dobing, and Dabinett. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Doby, which was dated 1275, in the "Hundred Rolls of Lincolnshire", during the reign of King Edward 1, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. 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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