This is a medieval diminutive form of the Ancient Greek "Timotheos" and the later Middle English "Timothy." The original baptismal name translated as "he who honours god" although which particular God is not clear, except that "he" was pagan. However this did not stop the later Christians from popularising it in its own right, the first Timothy being recorded as the companion of St. Paul. The name was introduced into England by the Knight Templars, more commonly known as the Crusaders, after 1066, and all early forms are diminutives of one sort or another, the surname as Timothy being extremely rare. In fact so rare that examples are not found until after the reformation of 1535, a fact which in itself raises more questions than it answers. However the diminutive forms are recorded as early as the 13th century, and these include Agnes Tymandson of York in 1477, what may be described as a double diminutive, whilst in 1603, John Timmens is recorded as buried at St Michaels Church, Cornhill, London. On July 25th 1622, William Timmins is registered as a witness at St Mary Woolnoth, London, whilst on July 7th 1784, Robert Smith married Mary Timmins at St Georges Church, Hanover Square, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Gilbert Timin, which was dated 1273, in the Hundred Rolls of Cambridgeshire, 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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