This interesting and unusual surname is of Scottish origin, and is a locational name from Fothringham, near Forfar, which itself seems to have been named after Fotheringhay in Northamptonshire, which was held in the 12th Century by the royal family of Scotland as part of the honour of Huntingdon. The place in Northamptonshire is derived from the Olde English pre 7th Century "fodring", grazing, a derivative of "fodor", fodder, and "eg", island, low-lying land, and was first recorded as "Fodringeia", in the Domesday Book of 1086. In the case of the Scottish place, the final element has been replaced by the Olde English "ham", homestead. The surname development since 1261 (see below) includes: Walter de Fodringgeye (1291, Scotland); Huwe de Foderingeye (1296, Perth); Henry de Foddrynghame (1358, Perth); and Henry de Fodrynghay (1364, Brechin). The modern surname can be found as Fotheringham, Fothringham, Fotringham and Fotringham. Among the recordings in Scotland are the marriages of David Fotheringham and Margaret Ker on March 17th 1602, at Midlothian, and of James Fotheringham and Marion Gibson on December 28th 1669, also at Midlothian. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Dominus Robert de Ffodryngay, which was dated 1261, in the "Register of Panmure", Brechin-Barclay, Edinburgh, Scotland, during the reign of King Alexander 111 of Scotland, 1249 - 1286. 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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