This is an English locational surname. According to the famous Victorian etymologist Canon Charles Bardsley, the surname originates from the village of Heathfield in the county of Sussex, or Heathfield in Somerset. However in fact there are some twelve places in England as far apart as Cumberland and Devonshire who possess a Heathfield village or a Heathfield House, and all or any could have provided name holders at sometime in the past seven centuries. The name was originally spelt as either 'haep felda' meaning an area of land on a moor cleared for agriculture, or possibly 'heah felda', meaning 'Deer land' and perhaps a reference to a hunting ground. Locational surnames are usually 'from' names. That is to say names given to people after they left their original homes to love somewhere else, or to the local lord of the manor and his descendants. The first known recording is that of Walter de Hethfeild of Norfolk in the tax rolls known as the 'Feet of Fines' in 1265, and this is one of the areas which does not have a Heathfield although this is not to say that it didnt seven hundred years ago. Other early recordings include Lynot de Hethfeld of Oxford in the Hundred Rolls of Landowners in 1273, and Thomas Heathfield given as being of Surrey, where there is at least one Heathfield, and who married Alice Cuddington in London in 1662.
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