This intriguing name is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is an example of that sizeable group of early surnames that were gradually created from the habitual use of nicknames. These were given in the first instance with reference to a variety of characteristics, such as a person's physical attributes or peculiarities, or their mental or moral qualities. In this case, the nickname is derived from the Olde English pre 7th Century "modig", brave, proud, a derivative of "mod", spirit, mind, courage, in Middle English "modie", with the developed meaning of impetuous, haughty, or angry.The nickname would thus have been acquired by someone thought to be particularly courageous, arrogant or foolhardy, or one quickly moved to anger. The modern surname can be found as Moody, Moodey, Moodie and Mudie, the latter two forms being found particularly in Scotland. One Symon Moody was an early emigrant to the New World colonies, leaving London on the "Globe" in August 1635, bound for Virginia. A Coat of Arms granted to a Moody family of Wiltshire is a green shield, a fesse engrailed silver surmounted of another, red, between three silver harpies crined gold. The Crest is a wolf's head erased proper. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Alwine Modi, which was dated 1100, in "Old English Bynames", Devonshire, during the reign of William 11, known as "William Rufus", 1087 - 1100. 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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