Recorded as Manson, Mainson, Mansioun and the rare Monson, this is Scottish surname. It derives from the pre 7th century Norse-Viking personal name Magnusson, meaning the son of Magnus, a popular name amongst the Norse, and one which used by several early kings of the Hebrides and the Isle of Man. The first name holder was probably a chieftain in the Hebrides in the year 972, but as a surname it did not become recorded until the 15th century, when Angus Mangson appears in the in the court registers of Kirkwall in 1446. Joseph Manson was recorded as being the official carpenter to Mary, Queen of Scots, in 1568, whilst in the same year Niells Monson was given as being a "native of the Shetlands". It is said that the nameholders were a branch of the Clan Gunn. What is certainly true is that in what is known as Elizabethan times, they spread rapidly from Caithness through Sutherland, to Ross. This was in the years upto the joining of the kingdoms of England and Scotland by the acccesion of James 1st of England and V1 of Scotland in 1603.
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