Recorded in various spellings including Gibben, Gibbin, Gibbins, Gibbon, and even Gubbin, this is an Anglo-Scottish medieval surname. It has two possible origins. Firstly, it may have originated from the pre 7th century Anglo-Saxon personal name "Gebwine", composed of the elements, "geba", meaning a gift and "wine", a friend; hence "good friend", or secondly and more likely it is a diminutive form of the pet name Gib or Gibb, a short form of the given name Gilbert. Gilbert, from the old German Gisilbert, is composed of the elements "gisil", meaning bright and "bertha", a pledge, and suggests the hope of parents that their son would continue the family line. Gilbert became a very popular given name in England during the Middle Ages, mainly through the fame of St. Gilbert of Sempringham (1085-1189), the founder of the only native English monastic order, the Gilbertines. Early examples of the surname recording include: Richard Gibun at St Bartholmews Hospital, London, in 1176, Dera Gibelot in the Hundred Rolls of Cambridge in 1279, and Thomas Gibon in the Assize Rolls of Kent in 1317. The first recorded spelling of the family name is believed to be that of Ralph Gibiun. This was dated 1176, in the "Pipe Rolls" of the county of Oxfordshire, during the reign of King Henry 11nd of England, 1154 - 1189. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop," often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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