This interesting surname is a variant of the surname Ring, which is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and derives from the Olde English pre 7th Century "hring", meaning ring; the Old High German word "hring" and the Old Norse "hringr" have the same meaning, and consequently, the surname may also be either German or Scandinavian in origin. It is generally accepted that Ring(e) was originally given as a metonymic occupational name to a maker of rings, to be worn either as jewellery, or as component parts of chain-mail, but latterly, in Scandinavia it was adopted as an ornamental name. The surname was first recorded in England at the beginning of the 13th Century (see below). The modern surname can be found as Ring, Ringe and Rings. Recorded in London Church Registers is the christening of James, son of William and Mary Ringe in July 1676 at St. Botolph-without-Aldgate. A Coat of Arms granted to a Ring family is silver, on a red bend three crescents of the first, the Crest being a hand vested black cuffed gold, holding a roll of paper. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Eilwinus Ring, which was dated 1207, in the "Chartulary Rolls of Norfolk", during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199-1216. 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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