This is a relatively rare English variant form of the Norman-French "Moliniere", a job descriptive name for a corn miller. There are a wide range of such variants, some bearing almost no resemblance to the original base form, but clearly showing the Norman influence on the early development of British surnames. These variants include: Mulliner, Milner, Molyneaux, Mallinar, Mullinder, Mallinder and Mullinger, of which the dialectally foreshortened "Milner" is the most numerous. It has been suggested that the nameholders had Huguenot associations, and in some cases this is true.However, the early recordings, of which there are numerous examples, date back to the 13th Century, some three hundred years before the Huguenot entry. These recordings, showing the "link" to the "modern" spellings include: Sancheus Moliner in the 1275 Rolls of Lincoln; William Molinder in the 1327 Subsidy Rolls of Somerset; Later recordings include William Mullinder of Sheffield, in the Hearth Tax Records of 1674, whilst on November 11th 1768, Sara Mallinder was christened at the church of St Mary Whitechapel, Stepney. On December 30th 1782, Sarah Mallender married Charles Powell at St. James's Church, Westminster, and on October 19th 1794, George Mallender was christened at Christ Church, Spitalfields, London, in the reign of George 111 (1760 - 1820). The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard de Mulinas (also spelt Molinaus), which was dated 1212, in the "Book of (Land) Fees for Lancashire", during the reign of King John, known by the nickname of "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. 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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