This unusual name has its origins in the female personal name "Adeline" or "Adelina", which was introduced into England by the Normans at the time of the conquest (1066). The derivation is from the Old German "adal", meaning "nobility", which formed the first element in many medieval personal names, such as "Albert" from "Adalbert". The change from "A" to "E" is explained by the influence of Old English pre 7th Century personal names beginning with "Aethel", which became "Adel" or "Edel" in Middle English. Thus "Edelina" is recorded as a personal name in Kent in 1214, as "Athelina" or "Edelina" in 1221 in the same entry. The surname development has included "John Edelyne", (1273, Cambridgeshire), Herricus Edlyn (1379, Yorks) and Michael Edlin (1607, Hants). The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Edelin. which was dated 1239, Records of the Monastery of Ramsey, Norfolk. during the reign of King Henry III, The Frenchman, 1216 - 1272. 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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