Recorded in many spellings including Edd, Edds, possibly Edge, the diminutives Edgell, Egdell, Egdal, Edgkin, and the patronymics Edgeson, Edgson, Edgekins, and possibly Edegkinson, this is an English surname. It is medieval but of pre 7th century origins. It derives from the early word for a sword ecg, to which was sometimes added a suffix such as wolf. Quite why anybody should be called "Sword-wolf" is a mystery from fifteen hundred years ago, but it was a popular baptismal name and as Ecg or later Edd or Edg, remained so until the Norman Invasion of 1066. Thereafter English or Saxon names became "politically incorrect", although some did survive, often in a changed spelling. Early recordings include John Edde of Oxford in 1273, William Eggel of Essex in 1278, and William Edesonne of Stafford in 1314. Later examples taken from surviving church registers include John Edgeson who married Mary Needler at St Dionis Backchurch in the city of London on April 16th 1640, and Edward Edgson at St Mary's Lewisham, on August 27th 1746. 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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