Recorded as Graet, Greet, Gritt, Grout and the diminutive Grittle, this is an English surname. It originates from three possible sources. Firstly, it may be of locational origin from "Greet", a place in both Nottinghamshire and Gloucester. The former was recorded as "Greotan" in the Anglo-Saxon Chrinicles of the year 958, whilst the latter was recorded as "Greta" in the Monasterii de Winchelcumba. Both are from the Old English word "greote", meaning gravel river. Early recordings from this source are Rannulf de Grete of Gloucester in 1207, and Peter de Grete from the Hundred Rolls of Shropshire in 1275. A second possiblity is that it was an occupational name for a supplier of gravel or someone who worked in a gravel pit, whilst the third possible origin is that it was a nickname for a large person, from the 7th century Old English word "great". Early recordings include Maud Grete in the Assize Rolls for Durham in 1243, and William Grete in the Subsidy Rolls for Sussex in 1296. Richardus Gritt married Joanna Mullington at St Martins in the Field, Westminster, on July 17th 1597, Ellen Grittle, the daughter of George Grittle, was christened at St Brides church, Fleet Street, in the city of London, on November 1st 1619, and on March 16th 1873, Rose Beatrice Greet, the daughter of Joseph Greet was baptised at Iverkip, Glasgow. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Philip de Grete, which was dated 1204, in the Curia Regis Rolls of Staffordshire. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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