Recorded as Enston, Enstone, and very rarely as Instone and Henstone, this is an English locational surname. It is locational from the village of Enstone, near to the town of Chipping Norton in Oxfordshire. According to the Oxford Dictionary of English Place Names it was first recorded in the famous Domesday Book of 1086 as Henstone. A century later in 1185 the spelling become Ennestan and in 1242, the more or less 'modern' Eneston. The meaning is believed to be 'the place of the water fowl' from the pre 7th century word 'henna', but this was also used as an early female personal name so it is equally possible that the name means 'Henna's farm' or settlement. It is unclear as to when the surname was first recorded but in the registers of the county of Oxford we have examples such as John Enston of Standlake who married Christiana Townsende in 1588, whilst Mary Enstone married William Druet at Bampton in 1642. 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.
© Copyright: Name Origin Research 1980 - 2017