This surname is Scottish, although also recorded in England. It is believed to be locational from the village of Loudoun, in the district of Cunningham, in the county of Ayrshire. The placename is composed of the Northern English word "low", meaning a flame or beacon, itself from the pre 7th century Norse word "loge", plus the Gaelic "doun", meaning a hill. In some instances it may be a variant of "Lothian", an ancient name of unknown origin, from the region thus called in south-east Scotland. The name is found in the modern idiom as Louden, Loudon, Loudoun and Lowdon. The surname first appears in records in the late 12th Century (see below), and early examples of the recording include: Adam Loudin in the deeds of Balliol College, Oxford, in the year 1280, whilst John de Louden was recorded in the Subsidy Rolls of Cumberland in 1332. Another John de Lowden was, according to the Scottish records, perpetual vicar of Kilpatrick in 1418, and Nicholas de Londoun or Lowdon held a tenement in the town of Irvine, in the years1418-1426. William Lowdown was christened on December 29th 1644, at Kilmarnock, Ayrshire and William Lowden married Jean Wright at the same place on December 6th 1811. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of James de Loudun. This was dated 1189, in surnames list of Scotland, during the reign of King William, the Lion of Scotland, 1165-1214.
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