This most interesting and unusual surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a topographical name given to a dweller at a crossroads or a fork in the road, from the Olde English pre 7th Century element "twicen(e)", a derivative of "twa", two. The name is popular in Devonshire as Twitchen, while other surnames from this source include Titchener, Tichner, Tutchener, Twitching(s), and Tutchings. Topographical names were among the earliest created, since both man-made and natural features in the landscape provided easily recognisable distinguishing names in the small communities of the Middle Ages. The surname itself first appears in records in the late 13th Century (see below), while other early recordings include Gilbert ate Thuychene, recorded in the "Minister's Accounts of the Earldom of Cornwall" in 1297, and Richard Twichener, mentioned in the "Letter Books of London" in 1432. Agnes, daughter of John Tyckner, was christened on March 20th 1602, at St. Gregory by St. Paul, London. Thomas Tickner and his wife were landholders in the town of "St. Michaells", Barbados in 1680. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Thomas de la Twichene, which was dated 1275, in the "Subsidy Rolls of Worcestershire", during the reign of King Edward 1, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. 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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