This interesting and unusual surname is a diminutive from the English name "Walthew", itself from a widespread Anglo-Scandinavian personal name "Waeltheof" (from the Old Norse "Valthiofr"), composed of the elements "val", battle and "piofr", thief, used to describe someone who snatched victory out of battle. In the north "Wael-", became "wal-", whereas in the south it became "wel-" and later "Wil-", due to local dialectal influences. Waldie is also found in Scotland, where it was recorded as a personal name, circa 1153 when Wallef filius ("son of") Arnabol made a grant of land to kelso Abbey. The surname itself is first recorded in the early 13th Century, (see below). Hugo Waldef was listed in the "Subsidy Rolls" of Worcester, in 1275. Adam Waldi was admitted burgess of aberdeen in 1400. Charlotte Ann Waldie (1788-1859), published a narrative of her Waterloo experiences in 1817, a description of Rome, 1820, and two Novels. She married Stephen Eaton in 1822. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Adam Walthef, which was dated 1219, The Assize Rolls of Yorkshire, during the reign of King Henry 111, "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. 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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