This unusual name is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a topographical surname deriving from the Old English pre 7th Century term "wudung", cutting of wood. The name was for someone who lived at a place where wood had been cut. Topographical surnames were among the earliest created, since both natural and man-made features in the landscape provided easily recognisable distinguishing names in the small communities of the Middle Ages. In some few cases, the modern surname may derive from the Old English "woding", a derivative of "wod", mad, used as a nickname for "the mad one". The development of the surname includes Richard atte Woding (1294, Worcestershire), and Abram Woodinge (1674, Suffolk), and the modern surname can be found as Wooding, Woodings, Wooddin, Woodin and Wooden. Among the recordings of the name in London is that of the marriage of Robert Wooding and Mary Pritchard, at St. Giles, Cripplegate, on July 26th 1649. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Woding (witness), which was dated 1247, The Bedfordshire Assize Rolls, 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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