Recorded in many spellings including Hugh, Hew, Hauch, and Gon (!), to the patronymic Hughson, Houson, and Hueson, and the diminutives Hewitt and Hugett, this is a surname of ultimately pre 7th century Germanic origins. The first spelling was as the given name Hugo meaning "heart or mind", and as such this spelling appears in the famous English Domesday Book of the year 1086. Perhaps not surprisingly given a meaning of heart or mind, the personal name was highly popular, and by the 12th century was to be found in almost every European country. The surname is recorded in the same period, (see below), the first of all the such hereditary surname recordings being found in England. This was the country which first adopted both surnames and register recordings as we know them today. These early recordings include such examples as Richard Hue of the city of Worcester,in the year 1275, and Henricus Housson in the poll tax register of Yorkshire in 1379. In Germany in the year 1402, one Willi Hugo is recorded as being a burger of Ravensburg, whilst English church recordings include William Hughson, who was christened on October 1606 at St. Giles, Cripplegate, London, and Racque Hugo, a French Huguenot, who was a witness Threadneedle Street French Church, London, on March 6th 1639. The first known recording of the family name is shown to be that of Rogerus Hugo, which was dated 1185, in the rolls of the Knight Templars of England. This was during the reign of King Henry 11, known as "The Builder of Churches", 1154 - 1189. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop", often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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