This the patronymic form (meaning 'son of') of the Medieval personal name 'Rawlin', from the Old French 'Raulin', itself a double diminutive of 'Raw', a variant of 'Ralph'. This last was first introduced into England by Scandinavian settlers as 'Rathulfr' in Old Norse, and became 'Raedwulf' in Anglo-Saxon. The name means 'counsel-wolf', from the Germanic elements 'rad', counsel, advice, plus 'wolf', wolf. Before the Norman Conquest it had become 'Radulf', a name borne by three recorded landowners in England during the reign of Edward the Confessor (1042 - 1066), and the Normans spread the name further in such forms as 'Rauf' and 'Raffe'. Thomas Tawlins (1620 - 1670), the medallist and playwright ('The Rebellion'), was installed as chief engraver of the mint at the Restoration (1660). The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Raulyn, which was dated 1290, Eynsham Parish Records, Oxfordshire, during the reign of King Edward I, The Hammer of the Scots, 1272 - 1307. 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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