This unusual and interesting name is a peculiarly Scottish form of the early medieval 'nickname' surname 'Mood(e)y'. The name derives from the Middle English word 'Modie', impetuous, brave, haughty or angry, from the Old English pre 7th Century 'modig', brave, proud, itself a derivative of 'mod', spirit, mind, courage. The nickname would thus have been conferred on someone thought to be courageous, arrogant or foolhardy. As a surname it is recorded in England rather earlier than in Scotland, as in Alwine Modi, recorded in 'Old English Byname' in Devonshire in circa 1100.The modern surname can be found in a variety of forms; 'Moodie', 'Moody', 'Moodey' and 'Mudie', the latter also particularly Scottish in origin. One William Mudy, merchant, obtained a 'safe conduct' to visit England in 1365. The marriage of John Moodie and Bessie Ogilvy was recorded in Edinburgh on the 15th July 1652. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Modi; juror, which was dated 1262, Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland, during the reign of King Alexander III, 'King of Scotland', 1249 - 1286. 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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