Recorded as Penfold and Pinfold, this is an English surname. It derives from the Olde English pre 7th century word "pundfald", meaning a pound or walled enclosure where stray animals and sometimes vagrants and gipsies, were kept. It was originally given either as an occupational name to someone in charge of such a pen or pound, or as a topographical name to one who lived by this man-made feature. Topographical surnames were among the earliest created, since both natural and man-made features in the landscape provided easily recognisable distinguishing names in the small communities of the Middle Ages. Early examples ofd the surname recording include Philip de la Pundfold and a Roger de la Pundfaude who appear in the Hundred Rolls of landowners of Sussex and Oxfordshire in 1275. Further early recordings from Sussex include Thomas ate Pundfolde in 1296, and John Pennefold in 1332. On January 24th 1590, Ann, daughter of John Pinfold, was christened at St. Dunstan's, Stepney, London and on March 28th 1665 An(n) Penfold and Hendory Smith were married at Sunbury on Thames. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert del Punfold. This was dated 1273, in the Subsidy Rolls of Suffolk, during the reign of King Edward 1st of England, and known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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