This is one apparently 'scottish' surname which has nothing whatsoever to do with the country of Scotland. It is in fact of French origin and derives from a place called 'Etocquigny', a village in the department of Seine-Inferieure, Northern France. It is probable that the original nameholders came to England with William the Conqueror in 1066, but this is not proven. Quite how the original name came to be transposed to the 'modern' spelling is one of the mysteries of the English language, since early recording were carried out, if not by Frenchman, or French speaking Normans, at least by French trained clerks. One would have thought that they at least, would have known how to spell French names. Nethertheless they didn't, and in consequence this surname has retained its 'English' or perhaps one should say Lincolnshire form, since that county is the epi-centre of the name, for nearly nine hundred years. Early examples include William de Scotney in the Yorkshire Assize rolls of the year 1219, whilst early church recordings include Christian Scottnye, son of Mychna Scottnye, christened at Whaplode, Lincolnshire, on September 16th 1599. Other recordings are those of Martin Scotney, who married Joan Fellowes at Holbeach, also Lincolnshire, on April 30th 1610, and Michael Scotney, who married Elizabeth Herveye at Uffington, on June 17th 1798, in the reign of George 111. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Hugo de Scotini, which was dated 1143, in the Danelaw Rolls of the county of Lincoln, during the reign of King Stephen, known as 'Stephen of Blois', 1135 - 1154. 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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