This interesting name is a patronymic from "Simkin", itself a pet form of the personal name "Simon", from a Hebrew word meaning "listening", and the diminutive "kin", little, plus "-s", meaning "son of". The name is first recorded towards the end of the 12th Century, and was originally chiefly found in the West Midlands of England. In the modern idiom, the name has no less than twelve spelling variations, including Simkin, Simkins, Simkiss, Simkings, Semken, Simpkin etc.. The intrusive "P" in the latter two names is a dialectal addition, introduced to make for easier pronunciation. Mary, daughter of Richard and Ann Simkins was christened at Hurst Berkshire on May 2nd 1762, while one James Simpkins was christened at Hungerford, Berkshire on May 26th 1685. Nathaniell Simkins, aged 26, travelled to St. Christopher in the Barbadoes aboard the "William and John", leaving London in September 1635. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Anand Simekin, which was dated 1199, The Suffolk Institute of Archaeology, 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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