Recorded in several forms including Ealden, which seems to be a later Georgian spelling, and Elizabethan forms such as Elden, Eldin, Eldon, Eldens, as well as cognates such as Hilden, Yalden, Jeldon and Yelden, this is an English surname. It is locational and originates from one or any of the places such as Hilden in the counties of Hampshire or Kent, or from Yelden in the county of Bedfordshire or possibly in some cases from a now 'lost' medieval village of which the surviving surname is the only public reminder. However given that over the centuries since the formation of surnames from about the year 1200 a.d., education has been at best minimal, and local dialects very thick, anything is possible with surnames spellings, particulary where no definitive location has been found. What we do know is that the earliest recording of Yelden village is in the famous Domesday Book of 1086 when the spelling is given as 'Giveldene' or the valley of the Ivel tribe, so it is easy to see how any number of surname spellings could have arisen from that. Hilden in Kent is later, being first recorded in 1291 as Hildenne or Hilda's valley. The surname is first recorded in the city of London church registers in 1556 when Elsabeth Elden married Johen Nelle at St Margarets Westminster, whilst Geoffrey Eldon was a christening witness at St Botolphs without Bishopgate, on October 26th 1610.
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