Recorded in a number of spellings including Lott, Lote, Lotte, Lots, and possibly others, this is an English surname but one of probably French origins. It may derive from the Hebrew personal name of Lot meaning "cover", which was popular in Northern France in medieval times. It is a Crusader name, being one introduced by knights returning from the Holy Land after the various crusades of the 12th century,. An alternative origin is English and an aphetic form of various names formed with the diminutive suffix -lot, for example Allot, Amelot, Emelot, Elliot, and others. Another possible origin is pre 7th century, and a nickname for a holder of an allotted share of land from the word "hlot" meaning a portion or share. The surname is early as shown below and other recordings from this period include William Lot in the Hundred Rolls of landowners of Suffolk in 1275, and Richard atte Lote in the the Subsidy Tax rolls of Sussex in 1296. Surving church recordings include John Lott who married Margaret Lee on July 16th 1590, at St. John's, Hackney, London, and Rychard Lot who was christened on October 28th 1610, at St. Michael's, Bassishaw. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Alwin Loth. This was dated 1162, in the Pipe Rolls of the county of Kent, during the reign of King Henry 11nd, known as "The Builder of churches", 1154 - 1189. 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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