This interesting surname of English origin with variant spellings Mabb, Mabe, Mabee, etc., derives from the medieval female given name Mab(be), a short form of the Middle English, Old french "Amabel", from the Latin "amabilis" meaning "loveable". This personal name has survived into the 20th Century in the aphetic form Mabel. The surname dates back to the late 13th Century, (see below). Further recordings include John Mabbe (1300), "Cartulary of Oseney Abbey, Oxford", and Agnes Mabbe (1379) "The Poll Tax Records of Yorkshire". Church recordings include Suzanna Mabe who married William Connysis on February 19th 1572 at St. Matthew's, Friday Street, London, and Peter, son of William Mabe, was christened on September 6th 1588 at St. Katherine by the Tower, London. A coat of arms was granted to John Mabbe of London which depicts a silver lion passant on a shield divided per pale red and blue, the crest being a wyvern, with wings back strewed over black roundles. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Mabbe, which was dated 1278, the Calendar of Letter Books of the City of London, during the reign of King Edward 1, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was 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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