This name with variant spellings, Ponte and Punt has two possible origins, topographical and locational. The first is a topographical name for "a dweller by a bridge". It derives from the Anglo-Norman French "pont", a development of the Latin "pons" meaning "a bridge". The surname from this source was first recorded in the late 13th Century (see below). One Peter del Pount appears in the Feet of Fines for Essex in 1279 and Walter Pont in the Subsidy Rolls for Suffolk, 1327. The second origin of the surname is locational from a river named "Pont" in Northumberland, which was recorded as "Ponte" in 1269 and as "Pont" in 1479. The surname from this source denoted "residence by the river". On May 5th 1550, one John Pont married Elyzabeth Castell in Christchurch, Greyfriars, Newgate, London. Samuell Pont was christened on March 10th 1559 in St. Gregory by St. Paul, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Amice de Ponte, which was dated 1268 (witness), in the "Assize Rolls for Somerset", 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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