This is an interesting and unusual name which is the diminutive form (as in "son of" or "little") of the Medieval given name Pain(e) from the Old French "Paien", and Latin "Paganus". The Latin name is a derivative of "Pagus", meaning an outlying village, and was used at first, in the sense of a rustic, later as a civilian as opposed to a soldier, and finally a heathen. In spite of its unchristian associations this was a very common christian name in the 12th Century and 13th Century and was no doubt, given without any, thought to its meaning. There is a theory that it was a name given to children whose baptism was postponed, but equally another which says it was a derogatory term applied to an adult whose religious zeal was a little lacking. Two recordings of christenings in London are as follows: One Richard Pannett on June 12th 1631 at St. Lukes, Chelsea and one Peter Pannett on March 27th 1701, in Putney. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard Painot, which was dated 1200, "The Pipe Rolls of Yorkshire", during the reign of King John "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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