This most interesting and unusual surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a locational name from a place so called in Lincolnshire, near Gainsborough, which was recorded as "Springetorp" in the Domesday Book of 1086, and as "Spring(e)torp" in the 1224 Episcopal Registers. The placename itself is composed of the Olde English pre 7th Century elements "spring, spryng", a spring or well, but which in Middle English also denoted "a plantation of young trees, especially one for rearing game", and "thorp", farm, village or settlement; hence, the placename probably means "farm or hamlet by a river-spring". Locational surnames, such as this, were usually acquired by a local landowner, or by the lord of the manor, and especially by those former inhabitants of a place who had moved to another area, usually in search of work, and were thereafter best identified by the name of their birthplace. Recordings from English Church Registers include: the christening of Beniamine Springthorp on July 28th 1687, at St. Martin in the Fields, Westminster, London; the marriage of John Springthorpe and Elizabeth Bulley on February 3rd 1712, at St. Botolph's, Bishopsgate, London; and the marriage of William Springthorpe and Elizabeth Horn on November 15th 1744, at Uffington, Lincolnshire. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Mary Springthorpe, which was dated June 23rd 1609, christened at Newark Upon Trent, Nottinghamshire, during the reign of King James 1 of England and V1 of Scotland, 1603 - 1625. 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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