This interesting surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a locational name from a number of places called Morden and Mordon. Morden in Cambridgeshire is recorded as "Mordun" in the 1015 Anglo-Saxon Wills; Morden in Dorset as "Mordone" in the Domesday Book of 1086; Morden in Surrey as "Mordune" in the 969 Crawford Collection of Early Charters; and Mordon in Durham as "Mordon" in the 1196 Pipe Rolls of the county. All placenames share the same meaning and derivation, which is the Olde English pre 7th Century "mor", moor, waste upland, fen, and "dun", down, hill, mountain; hence, "hill in fens". Locational surnames were given to the lord of the manor, and to those former inhabitants who left to live or work in another area, and in this way the spelling of the name often changed with varying regional pronunciations. Ralph de Mordone is listed in the 1273 Hundred Rolls of Cambridgeshire. In the modern idiom the surname has many variant spellings ranging from Mordan, Morden and Murden, to Moredon and Meardon. Recordings of the surname from Devonshire Church Registers include: the christening of Robert, son of William Meardon, on February 14th 1602, at Widecombe in the Moor, and the marriage of Joanna Meardon and Willmus Soper took place on September 28th 1607, at Bovey Tracey. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John de Mordon, which was dated 1273, in the "Hundred Rolls of Cambridgeshire", 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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