This interesting and unusual name with variant spelling Gudgen and Gudgin, derives from the old French word "Goujon", Gudgeon, which is the name of a fish considered easy to catch, hence the name may have been used for a credulous person, a person who may have been given the nickname because he was tricked or cheated at some stage in his life. The name first appears in records in the early 13th Century (see below). The Curia Rolls of Wiltshire records a Robert Guiun in 1221 and one Henry Gojun was mentioned in the Subsidy Rolls of Staffordshire. Simon Gudgin married Elizabeth Cramphorne at Cheshunt, Hertfordshire on June 11th 1635 while John, son of John and Ann Gudgen was christened at St. James, Clerkenwell London on February 23rd 1651. Peter Gudgeone married Elizabeth Bunny also at St. James, Clerkenwell on November 25th 1652. Elizabeth, son of Daniel and Mary Gudgeon was christened at St. Michaels, St. Albans, Hertfordshire on January 12th 1783. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Peter Guggun, which was dated 1206, in the "Curia Rolls of Lancashire", during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. 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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