This very unusual and interesting name is generally accepted as being a medieval English metonymic occupational name for one who made or sold "cameline", an expensive cloth made from camel-hair. The word and the trade is thought to have been introduced to England by followers of William the Conqueror after the Norman Invasion of 1066. Job-descriptive surname originally denoted the actual occupation of the namebearer, and later became hereditary, but not usually before the 13th century. However there is a second possibility in that this name could in some cases at least, be an example of the medieval practice of creating a surname from a nickname.The nickname would have been applied to one who habitually wore clothes made of camel-hair cloth, no doubt distinction in itself. Early examples of the surname recordings include William Campeling in the Hundred Rolls of Norfolk in 1275, John Camplyon, rector of Rackheath Parva, Norfolk, in the year 1404, James Camplen of Yorkshire in 1664, and Sarah Kimbling who married Henry Baker at St Lukes Finsbury, on November 19th 1792. In the modern idiom the name can be found as Camblin, Cambling, Campling, Camplin, Camplen, Camelin, Kimberlin, Kimbling, Kimbling, and Kimblen. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Campelin. This was dated 1273, in the Hundred Rolls of Norfolk, during the reign of King Edward 1st, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes 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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