Perhaps not surprisingly this is an English surname recorded in many forms as shown below. It is locational from a long lost medieval village, which was originally situated between the small towns of Marple and Macclesfield in the county of Cheshire. The surname illustrates the formerly semi-mobile nature of early villages, in that in response to local and sometimes national calamities such as plague, changes in agricultural practices, land drainage, economics, or even civil war, the inhabitants could be scattered to the four winds. This is proved by the many and varied spellings of complicated surnames such as this one. Here there are (at least) ten spellings including Hickenbotham, Hickenbottom, Hickinbottom, Hicklingbottom, Higginbottom, Higginbotham, Hickingbotham, Hickinbottom, Hickensbotham and Higgenbotam, all different from the original spelling. The place name means the dweller at "Hygg's land in the valley base," and the first recording of the family name is believed to be that of John Hyggynbothom. This was dated 1563, in the parish records of Prestbury in Cheshire, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1st of England, known to history as "Good Queen Bess", 1558 - 1603. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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