This interesting surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a locational name from Aspinwall, a minor place in the parish of Ormskirk, Lancashire, so called from the Olde English pre 7th Century "aespen", aspen, trembling poplar, with "waell(a)", spring or stream. Locational names were originally given to the lord of the manor, or as a means of identification for those who left their place of birth to seek work elsewhere. A quotation from Baines' "History of Lancashire", dated 1216 - 1272, reads "Richard le Walais, lord of Litherland, grants by deed to William Pike of Aspinwall...". One Gilbert de Aspenwall was noted in the 1332 Lay Subsidy Rolls of Lancashire, and a James Aspinall appears in Wills Records held at Chester, dated 1591. In the modern idiom, the surname has many variant spellings including: Aspinal, Aspinall, Aspinell, Aspinwall and Haspineall. A Coat of Arms granted to the family is a gold shield, a chevron between three black griffins' heads erased. A black demi griffin erased, beaked, legged, and collared gold is on the Crest. The Motto, "Aegis fortissima virtus", translates as, "Virtue is the strongest shield". The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Henry de Aspenewell, which was dated 1246, witness in the "Assize Court Rolls of Lancashire", during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. 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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