Recorded as Doubleday and Douberday, this is an English medieval surname. It has two possible origins. The first is from the French word "doubel", meaning two, and used in the nickname sense for twin children. The suffix -day does not refer directly to a part of a week, but to servant who worked daily, and hence the surname described someone who looked after twin children, probably those of a noble or the lord of the manor. The derivation is from the pre 7th century Olde English word "daege", and this originally described only a female servant, however it is recorded in the Middle English Dictionary that after the year 1270 it also described a male servant. The second possible origin is that the name is from Dobbe, an early nickname form of Robert, and hence could describe the servant of a man called Robert. Two early recordings in surviving church registers of the city of London are those of Elizabeth Doubleday and Edward Hole at the church of St. Bartholomew-the-Less on 30th June 1647, and that of Jebediah Doublerday and Mary Westbrooke at St. James church, Dukes Place, Westminster, on October 21st 1687. The first recorded spelling of the family name is believed to be that of Robert Dubleday. This was dated 1219, in the Assize Rolls of Yorkshire, during the reign of King Henry 111rd, known as "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes 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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