This most interesting and unusual surname has two possible origins. Firstly, it may be a variant of "Shotton", a locational name from any of the various places so called in Durham and Northumberland, named from the Olde English "Scotta-tun", composed of "Scotta", Scots, and "tun", settlement; or "sceot-tun", from the Olde English "sceot", a steep bank and "tun", as above; or from "sceat-tun", from the Olde English "sceat", a corner of land, and "tun". Hence the name may mean "the settlement of the Scots"; the settlement at a steep place"; or settlement in a corner of land of a parish or other administrative division". Shotton in the parish of Glendale, Northumberland is "hill of the Scots", the second element being the Olde English "dun", hill. The name is well recorded in Scotland: Stephen de Scothun witnessed a charter by Cecilia de Molle, circa 1200, according to the Register of the Abbey of Kelso, while one Hume de Shottone of Roxburghshire rendered homage in 1296, in the "Calendar of documents relating to Scotland". Ralph del Schoton is recorded in the Subsidy Rolls of Derbyshire in 1327. Jane Shottin married James Flint on October 5th 1707 at Longhoughton in Northumberland. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert de Schottun, which was dated 1180, in the "Register of the Abbey of Kelso", during the reign of King William "The Lion" of Scotland, 1165 - 1214. 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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