This interesting name has two possible origins, the first and most likely being a topographic name for someone who lived on a flat piece of land deriving from the Old French "plat" meaning "a flat surface". The surname is first recorded in the early half of the 13th Century (see below). One Geoffrey de (of) Platte appears in the 1285 Assize Court Rolls of Lancashire and a Henry atte Platte in the 1327 Subsidy Rolls of Staffordshire. In the 1379 Poll Tax Returns of Yorkshire, a Johannes de Plattes is recorded, and a Robert Plattes appears in the 1590 Register of the Freeman of the City of York.The name may also derive from the Olde English pre 7th Century "plaett", from the early medieval English "plat" meaning "a plank bridge", and given to one dwelling by a foot bridge. An interesting namebearer was Sir Hugh Platt (1552 - 1611), a writer on agriculture and an inventor, who published his chief work on gardening, "Floraes Paradise" in 1608, and also wrote small works on such topics as household recipes for preserving fruit, distilling, cooking, and dyeing the hair. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John de la (of the) Platte, which was dated 1242, in the "Pipe Rolls of Worcestershire", during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. 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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