Recorded as Marde, Morde, Mardey, Mardy, Mardee, Mordy, Mordey, Mordie, and probably others, this is a rare and unusual surname. We believe that it is English, and a medieval nickname diminutive of endearment. If so there are two possible origins. Firstly we have the female personal name Maud, itself a surname and known to be recorded as Mawd, Maud and Maudie, and ultimately a short form of the Ancient British pre Roman name Matilda. The second is from the famous Welsh name Meredith, which has been the precursor of many surnames some far removed from the original, and including such forms as Merridew, Mereday or Merriday. The surname does not seem to have an epicentre in England although reasonably well recorded in the city of London, and with some fifty current nameholders as Mardee in the USA. The early recordings taken from surviving church registers include Robert Mordey at St Martins in the Field, Westminster, on March 22nd 1645, and William Mardee who married Mary Halswill at Northam in Devonshire, on October 24th 1737. The first recording in any spelling may be that of Geoffrey Maude in the Hundred Rolls of Huntingdon, in the year 1273.
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