Recorded in a number of spellings including Lute, Lutt, Loot, Leutt, Luter, Luther and diminutives Latkins, Lutken, Lutkin, Lutkins, as well as Littrell and Luttrell, this is an English surname, but one possibly of either French or sometimes German, origins. If so it was probably introduced into the British Isles after the famous conquest of England in 1066, with the first explanation being from the word 'luter'. This would have been occupational for a musician who p layed the lute, although it is also possible that the derivation could have come from the personal name 'Luther'. Secondly it could derive from the French word 'loutre' meaning an otter, and possibly a nickname an otter hunter or it may derive from a place called Latrille in Landes, of which the normal spelling of the surname in England is Latreille. Lastly according to the famous Victorian etymologist Canon Charles Bardsley writing in 1880, the name is locational from a place called Luttrell. We have not been able to establish the (former?) existence of any such place, but in the the tax registers known as the Feet of Fines for the county of Essex in the year 1206, we have the recording of Geoffrey de Lutterell. Later recordings include John de Leuter in the city of London in 1292, a spelling which would also suggest that there was once a place called Leuter. Margaret Lutte is recorded at St Michael's Cornhill in 1565, Tristram Littrell who married Elizabeth Mempus (?) at St Dunstans Stepney, on April 23rd 1618, and Antony Lutkins, a christening witness at St Anne Soho, Westminster, on August 4th 1719.
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