This surname De KNEVETT was originally from the French name 'de Knyvet'. The name was brought to England in the wake of the Norman Conquest in 1066. Early records of the name mention KNYVETTE (without surname) who was listed as a tenant in the Domesday Book of 1086. Matthew de Knyvet was documented in the year 1273 in County Nottingham. Thomas Kynvett of Yorkshire, was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. William Knevett, 'of the Household of our Lord the King Henry and The Lady Katherine Grey' was recorded in the year 1523. Nathanial Knevet of County Norfolk, registered at Oxford University in 1633. Henry Knevett of London registered at Oxford in 1671. Thomas Knevit married Easter Hall at St. George's, Hanover Square, London in 1789. Between the 11th and 15th centuries, it became customary for surnames to be assumed in Europe, but is was not common practice in England or Scotland before the Norman Conquest of 1066. The advantages were recognized firstly by those of noble birth, and particularly by those who went on the Crusades, as it added prestige and practical advantage to their status. It was not until the reign of Edward II (1307-1327) that is became common practice for all people. The rise of surnames, according to the accepted theory, was due to the Norman Conquest of 1066 when Old English personal-names were rapidly superseded by the new christian names introduced by the Normans. Of these, only a few were really popular and in the 12th century this scarcity of christian names led to the increasing use of surnames to distinguish the numerous individuals of the same name. Some Normans had hereditary surnames before they came to England, but there is evidence that surnames would have developed in England even had there been no Norman Conquest. The development of the feudal system made it essential that the king should know exactly what service each person owed. Payments to and by the exchequer required that debtors and creditors should be particularized, and it became official that each individual acquired exact identification.
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