Recorded as Reddie, Redie, Reidy, Readdie, and Reidie, this is a surname of "British Isles" origins. It has three possible sources. Firstly, the surname may be of early medieval English origin, and an example of that sizeable group of early European surnames that were gradually created from the habitual use of nicknames. Here the derivation is from the words "readi or redi", meaning fast, and as such given to a provident or quick-acting person. In Scotland the name is locational from "Reedie", a place in the former county of Angus, whose name is of uncertain origin, but is probably a refernce to "reed beds". In Ireland the surname is a form of the ancient pre 10th century Gaelic O'Rodaigh, composed of the elements O', meaning descendant of, and "Rodach", a personal name derived from "rod", meaning hearty, or lively, and hence close to the English version. Early examples of the surname recording include: John Rady in the Subsidy Rolls of Essex in 1327, whilst James Reddy was noted as a witness in Perthshire in 1549, and James Reidie was a witness in Dunfermline in 1649. The "Arms" most associated with the family is a blue shield with three silver swans wings endorsed. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert le Redye. This was dated 1260, in the "Assize Court Rolls of Yorkshire", during the reign of King Henry 111rd, 1216 - 1272. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes 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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