Research in Victorian times suggested that this unusual name was a variant spelling of the Olde French "Orpin" or "Orpyn" a herbaceous plant renowned for its life giving qualities and hence a description of a Herbalist. Whilst this may be a source of the name recent research suggests that it is a derivation of Halpin or Halpen a medieval French word for a money lender or a variant anglicization of the Irish Halpin, formerly O'hAilpin. Translating as "the descendants of the son of the stout one" - the records suggest that the latter is most likely. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Martha Olpin. which was dated 1722, married George Prescott at St. Brides, Fleet Street, London. during the reign of King George I, "Hanover Square", 1715 - 1727. 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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