Recorded in several forms as show below, this interesting and unusual name is English, but of early medieval French origins. It is locational from the villages of Quincy-sous-Senart in Seine-et-Oise, or Quincy-Voisins in Seine-et-Marne, or Cuinchy in the Pas-de-Calais. All derive their names from the pre 5th century Roman personal name "Quintas", meaning fifth born. The surname was introduced into England and the British Isles by soldiers of Duke William of Normandy, during his successful conquest of England in 1066. It is one of the oldest surnames recorded and an early example is that of Henry Quenci in the Danelaw Documents for the city of London in 1154. In the modern idiom the spellings include Quince, Quincey, Quinsee, Quinsey and De Quincey. Amongst the many recordings in surviving church registers of the city of London are those of Bennet Quincee and Thomas Gee who were married on December 14th 1592, and John Quince and Jeanne Huggins on May 23rd 1625, both at St. Dunstan's, Stepney. The English writer Thomas De Quincey (1785 - 1859), was born in Manchester, into a family of Norman origin, who in the 13th Century held the Earldom of Winchester. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Saer de Quincy, which was dated 1154 - 1163, in the records of the Knight Templars for Oxfordshire, during the reign of King Henry 11nd 1154 - 1189. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes known as the 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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