The medieval period from the 11th Century to the 14th Century was not only the time when surnames developed, it was also the period when humour and satire were applied on a very personal level. The name "Maides" is a case in point. It derives from the Olde English pre 7th Century "maegden" meaning "a young girl, a maiden". However, as surnames were not applied to women, clearly it was a form of nickname, applied to a man! It is probable that the 13th Century interpretation was different to that of the 20th Century, as it is difficult to believe that a person would voluntarily accept a name regarded as derogatory.It is our opinion that the surnames Maid, Maides and Maiden have a religious significance, and relate to service to the Virgin Mary, but this is conjecture based on professional experience. The recordings examples include: John Mayde in the 1327 Subsidy Rolls of Worcester; whilst Edward Maides, in the patronymic form, is recorded at St. Dunstan's Church, Stepney, London, on August 29th 1611. The regular name recordings include Made, Mades, Maids and Maides, with Madde and Maed making occasional appearances. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Abram Maide, which was dated 1185, in the "Pipe Rolls of Cornwall", during the reign of King Henry 11, known as "The Builder of Churches", 1154 - 1189. 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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