This most interesting surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a locational name from Marland, a minor place in the parish of Rochdale, in Lancashire. The placename itself is composed of the Olde English elements "mere", a lake, pool, and "land", land; hence "land by a lake". There are also places called Peters Marland in Devon, recorded as "Merland" in the Domesday Book of 1086 (the site of a church dedicated to St. Peter), and Marlands in Somerset. The first recorded namebearer appears in the 13th Century (see below) and a branch of the family of Marland continued to reside and hold lands at Marland in Lancashire from the 13th Century until the latter part of the 17th Century; the name is presently widespread in the Church Registers of Lancashire and Devonshire. Ede Marland married Laurence Bonifeilde on July 17th 1567, at St. Mary Major, Exeter, Devonshire; and Ann, daughter of Jacob Marland, was christened on April 4th 1583, at Rochdale, Lancashire. A Coat of Arms granted to a family of this name depicts, on a red shield three gold bars wavy, on each as many martlets sable. The crest being a demi lion rampant gules. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Alan de Merland, which was dated circa 1250, in Baine's "History of Lancashire", during the reign of King Edward 1, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1216 - 1272. 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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