This is a Spanish locational surname, recorded in the spellings of Padilla and Padillo. It originates from one of the various villages so-called in the provinces of Burgos, Guadaljar and Valladolid, these places being originally built in depressions in the ground. The word 'padilla' derives from the Roman 'patella' and described originally a sauce or bread pan, and possibly the villages are an allegorical reference to a very hot place. The early recordings are all prefixed by the preposition 'de' suggesting that the family were land owners of status. Usually these prepositions were lost when the name travelled overseas, however this was not always the case with this surname, as shown below. Examples of these early recordings taken from authentic church and civil registers include Casilda Acuria de Padillo, at Nuestra Senora de La Antigua, Valladolid, Spain, on January 17th 1562, and Martinez Pablo Padilla, at San Esteban, Navarra, Spain, on April 29th 1596. Maria Jospeh de Garcia Padilla was christened at Mission San Carlos, Moneterey, California, on April 16th 1795, and Leonarda Padillo married Esaura Huarez at Montebello, Los Angeles, California, on September 14th 1914. The coat of arms has the unusual blazon of a blue field, three spoons palewise between three crescents, all silver. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Ysabella de Padillo, which was dated October 14th 1552, christened at Nuestra Senora de la Antigua, Valladolid, during the reign of King Charles 1st of Spain, Emperor of Mexico, 1516 - 1556. 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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