Recorded in many surname spellings including Ayton, Eaton, Eton, Eyton, Iton, Iteen and apparently the extraordinary Eighteen, this interesting name is usually of Olde English and Anglo-Saxon pre 7th century origins. It is a locational surname deriving from any one of the numerous places called Eaton, Eton, and Ayton, found in several counties of England. Most of these places are named from the Olde English words "ea", meaning river, and "tun", a farm or settlement. They are variously recorded in the famous Domesday Book of 1086 in the spellings of Etone, Etune, Ettuna, and Ettone.It is therefore easy to see how the later surname spellings developed over the centuries. However there is also a probablity that at least some of the later surname spellings developed from the French name "Etienne" or "Estienne", forms of the personal name Stephen, and well recorded amongst the Huguenot protestant refugees of the 17th century. Examples of London recordings which may help to show the surname development include the christening of John Eaton, at St. Lawrence Jewry, on January 20th 1566, and the marriage of Edward Eton and Clemence Jordan at St. Mary Woolchurch, on October 15th 1570. Blais Etienne was recorded at the French Church, Threadneedle Street, on January 6th 1656, Charlotte Eteen at St Pancras Old Church, on February 24th 1844, and Henry Eighteen, at St Pauls, Deptford, on December 7th 1851. The first recorded spelling of the family name is believed to be that of Peter de Eton. This was dated 1273, in the "Hundred Rolls" of the county of Huntingdonshire", during the reign of King Edward 1st of England, 1272 - 1307.
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