Recorded in many forms as shown below, this is an English surname. It originates from the pre 6th century female personal name Matilda. This has the literal translation of "Mighty battle maid," a description which apparently aided its early popularity, and therefore was quite a appropriate name for a Second World War tank! As Matilda was a bit of a mouthful, in medieval times people started creating short forms or nicknames of which Tilda, Tilla and Tolla became popular as surnames in their own right. Diminutives such as Till-et Toll-et and Tull-et followed shortly afterwards. The modern spellings forms include Tallet, Taylet, Taylot, Tillett, Tillott, Tollet, Tollett, Tullot, Tullett, and others, and all have exactly the same origin and meaning. Amongst the early recordings are those of Mary Tollet who married Mathias White at St. Mary le Bone on August 4th, 1682, whilst John Tollit married Elizabeth Whitehall at St. Pancras Old Church, both city of London, on March 15th, 1823. Joseph Tullet was one of the earliest settlers in the colonies of New England, emigrating from London to Elizabeth City, Virginea in 1635. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of George Tillote. This was dated 1279, in the Pipe Rolls of Oxford, during the reign of King Edward lst, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272-1307. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes 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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