Baffin

Baffin - what does Baffin surname mean?

This name appears to be of Welsh origin, and indeed the name is widely recorded in Wales. However, there is an enclave of the name in the Oxford area, and these namebearers appear to derive from one family resident in Great Rollright, Oxfordshire, from at least the late 16th Century. Assuming the Welsh connection, the name is a diminutive term of endearment. As `bach` also means `little`, the name translates as `the little (one) of little!`. However, a study of the name register for Oxford shows earlier recordings in the spelling of Baugham; Robert Baugham marrying Emma Lane at Shipton under Wychwood, on June 1st 1574. This spelling form may derive from a `lost` village called Bagham or Bigham, the surname spelling being dialectal. However, it was not wholly uncommon for Welsh namebearers to `migrate` eastwards at this time, Oliver Cromwells family also being of Welsh origin. Examples of the recordings include: Lucas Baughen, who married Elizabeth Luckman at Banbury, on June 1st 1741, whilst on July 25th 1813, Henry, the son of James and Elizabeth Baughan, was christened at Charlbury, Oxfordshire. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Joane Baughan (parents not known), which was dated April 24th 1600, christened at Great Rollright, Oxfordshire, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, known as `Good Queen Bess`, 1558 - 1603. 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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