Recorded as Tomlinson, and occasionally Thomlesson, Tombleson or Tomblinson, this is a famous English, and sometimes Scottish and Irish surname. It is one of the patronymic forms of the early given name Thomas. This name is rarely recorded in Europe before the famous Crusades of the 12th century, and certainly its ultimate popularity was as a result of these campaigns. The patronymic and diminutives of Thomas include such as Tomlin, meaning 'the kin of Thomas', whilst Tomlins is a short form of Tomlinson and describes 'the son of the kin of Thomas', a double patronymic. Other similar surnames are Tomkins and Tompkins, also recorded as Tomkinson and Tompkinson, the intrusive 'p' being a dialectal addition to aid pronunciation, as surprisingly is the intrustive 'b' in Tombleson etc. The origination of the name is from the pre Roman Aramaic byname 'Tomas' meaning "The twin". Considering that 'Thomas the disciple' is best known for his disbelief at Christ's resurrection, it is surprising that his name achieved such wide spread usage. Early examples of the name recording include a priest called Thomas in the famous Domesday Book of 1066, William Thomekyn in the pipe rolls of Eynesham, Oxford, in 1323, Wylliam Tombleson in the Subsidty Tax roiolls of Suffolk in 1524, and Donald Thomassone of Golspie, Scotland, in 1546. One of the earliest settlers in the new American colonies, was Matthew Tomlinson, who on May 16th 1635, left London appropriately on the ship "Mathew", bound for St. Christophers in the West Indies. The blazon of the most ancient coat of arms has a black field, charged with a gold fess between three gold falcons. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Henry Tomlinson. This was dated 1379, in the Poll Tax Rolls of the county of Yorkshire, during the reign of King Richard 11nd, 1377 - 1399.
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