This most interesting and unusual surname is of early medieval English origin, and derives from the Middle English given name "Tamlin", which itself is a double diminutive of "Tam, Tom", short forms of "Thomas", with the Anglo-French diminutive suffixes "-el", and "-in". The personal name "Thomas", is itself of biblical origin, from the Aramaic word meaning "twin", borne by one of the disciples of Christ. It is not recorded as an English baptismal name before the Norman Conquest, but occurs in the Domesday Book of 1086. Its popularity in England was due to St. Thomas a Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury, who was murdered in 1170. Thomas Aquinas, a 13th Century Sicilian friar, was the greatest thinker of the Middle Ages. The surname is first recorded in the early 14th Century (see below). Early examples of the surname include the marriage of John Tamblyn and Jone Harris at Bodwin, Cornwall, on August 19th 1560; the marriage of Jo Tombling and Alson Cocksleye, on January 30th 1564, also at Bodmin; and the christening of Anne, daughter of Thomas Tamlyn, at St. Mabyn in Cornwall on March 31st 1579. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Peter Tamelyn, which was dated 1327, in the "Subsidy Rolls of Staffordshire", during the reign of King Edward 111, known as "The Father of the Navy", 1327 - 1377. 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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