This interesting and unusual surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is an occupational name for an archer or marksman. It derives from the pre 7th Century "sceotan", to shoot (Middle English "shoot(en)"), with the addition of the agent suffix "er" (one who does or works with). Job descriptive surnames originally denoted the actual occupation of the namebearer, and later became hereditary. Occasionally the name may denote someone who hunted birds or animals for a living, as in Fowler, Todhunter and Hunter. Early examples of the surname include: Stephen le Shotiere (Essex, 1255); Henry Schuetere (Worcestershire, 1275); and John Schewter (Yorkshire, 1379). In 1579, one Richard Shooter was noted in "A Descriptive Catalogue of Sheffield Manorial Records" (Yorkshire), whilst church records include examples such as Edmond, the son of John Shuter, christened at St Andrews Church, Holborn, London, on July 16th 1612, and Charles Shuter, who married Henrietta Charles at St James Church, Westminster, on October 10th 1773. In the modern idiom the name is variously spelt: Shuter, Shotter, Shooter, Chuter, Chooter and Chewter. The family Coat of Arms is an azure shield with three bezants (gold coins) on a red chevron between in chief, two sheaves of six red arrows interlaced saltireways, flighted and pheoned silver, and in base a silver bow stringed fessways, the Crest being a demi lion rampant erminois, charged on the shoulder with two red arrows, flighted proper, in the paws a slip of oak leaves acorned also proper. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert Scotere, which was dated 1148, in the "Winton Rolls of Hampshire", during the reign of King Stephen, known as "Count 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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