Recorded in a wide variation of spellings including: Skeffington, Skevington, Skivington and Skiffington, this is an English locational surname. It is of Olde English and Anglo-Saxon pre 7th century origins, the parish and village of Skeffington being in the county of Leicestershire. According to Ekwalls famous book on English place names, the derivation is from 'Sceaft - ing - tun', meaning the place of the Sceaft tribe. 'Sceaft' itself may be a derivative of 'sceap', meaning sheep, and therefore refer to a tribe who were famous for their sheep breeding. The village is first recorded in the year 1086 in the famous Domesday Book, and then in the spelling of 'Scifitone' becoming 'Sceaftinton' in the year 1192. The surname is slightly later and being locational is usually 'from' name. That is to say that the nameholders originally gained their name either because they were the local lords of the manor of Skeffington, which may apply in the first recording shown below, or more likely not because they lived in Skeffington, but because they had done previously. Early examples of the surname recording include: David de Scheifinton in the 1273 Hundred rolls of Leicestershire, William Skevington of Staffordshire in the 1578 register of students at Oxford University, and William Sheffington, a witness at the church of St Martins in the Field, Westminster, in 1742.
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