This most interesting and unusual surname is of Old French origin, and is a variant of "Fitch", which derives from the Old French "fiche", an iron point, from "ficher", to fix, plant. Hence Fitch is a metonymic occupational name for a workman who used an iron-pointed implement, one who used a spear or lance, or someone who made the implement or weapon. There is a word "fitch", polecat, in the early modern English language, but this has been dismissed as a likely source for the name, on the grounds that the word is not found in this form until the 16th Century. Variants of the surname in the modern idiom include Fitcher, Fick, Feak(e)s, Fitchett, Fitchen, Fitchell and Fidget. Early recordings include Hugh Fichet, who appears in the Pipe Rolls of Dorset in 1176; William Fige, recorded in the Pipe Rolls of London in 1230; and William Fiche, mentioned in the Yorkshire Subsidy Rolls of Yorkshire in 1297. Thomas Fidge married Mary Webb on July 20th 1648 at St. Bride's, Fleet Street, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard Fige, which was dated 1198, in the "Pipe Rolls of Sussex", during the reign of King Richard 1, known as "The Lionheart", 1189 - 1199. 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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