This interesting and unusual name is of Anglo-Saxon and Old Norse origin, and is a locational surname deriving from the place called Scruton, near Bedale in North Yorkshire. The place is recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086 as "Scurvetone", and as "Scuruentune" in the 1185 "Records of the Templars in England". The placename means "Scurfa's settlement", from the Old Norse bynames "Skurfa", with the Old English pre 7th Century "tun", enclosure, settlement. In the "Anglo-Saxon Chronicles", the name of a Scandinavian jarl is recorded as "Scurfa". Locational surnames were acquired especially by those former inhabitants of a place who had moved to another area, and were thereafter best identified by the name of their birthplace. The modern surname can be found as Scruton and Srutton, and the development of the name in Yorkshire includes Screwton (1568), Scroyton (1581) and Scrouton (1611). The marriage of John Scruton and Catharine burnard was recorded in Aldborough near York on November 6th 1575. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Johanna de Scruton, which was dated 1379, in the Yorkshire Poll Tax Returns, during the reign of King Richard 11, known as Richard of Bordeaux, 1377 - 1399. 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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