Recorded in several forms including Laughton, Lauton, Lawton, Lowten, Lowton, and others, this is an English surname. It is locational from the villages of Lawton in Cheshire, both being recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086 as 'Lautune'. There is also a Lawton village in Herefordshire and this is also recorded in the Domesday Book as 'Lautone', although perhaps strangely this village does not seem to have been the originating source of any surnames. The derivation is from two pre 7th century words "hlaw", meaning a low hill or a mound, and "tun", a fenced enclosure or settlement. The earliest recordings of the surname was at the beginning of the 13th century (see below), whilst in the Assize Rolls for Cheshire, Philip de Lauton was a witness in 1281. Other recordings include Robert Lawton from Cheshire in the tax returns for Devon in 1642, and Edward Lowton at St Johns Hackney, in the city of London, on September 13th 1799. Hugo de Lawton in the time of King Henry V1 (1422 - 1461), bore the coat of arms with the blazon a silver field, on a fess between three black cross crosslets fitchee, a silver cinqefoil. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Adam de Lauton, which was dated 1205, in the Pipe Rolls of the county of Lancashire, during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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