The surname of DELAP, also spelt LAPPIN was a baptismal name 'the son of Lapin' a French personal name which was brought to England and Ireland in the wake of the Norman Conquest of 1066. The earliest French hereditary surnames are found in the 12th century, at more or less the same time as they arose in England, but they are by no means common before the 13th century, and it was not until the 15th century that they stabilized to any great extent; before then a surname might be handed down for two or three generations, but then abandoned in favour of another. In the south, many French surnames have come in from Italy over the centuries, and in Northern France, Germanic influence can often be detected. Early records of the name mention Robert Lapyn who was recorded in the year 1320 in County Yorkshire. Lapinus Roger, M.P. for Canterbury, during the reign of Edward III (1327-1377). Thomas Lapyn was documented in County Suffolk in 1398. Many factors contributed to the establishment of a surname system. For generations after the Norman Conquest of 1066 a very few dynasts and magnates passed on hereditary surnames, but the main of the population, with a wide choice of first-names out of Celtic, Old English, Norman and Latin, avoided ambiguity without the need for a second name. As society became more stabilized, there was property to leave in wills, the towns and villages grew and the labels that had served to distinguish a handful of folk in a friendly village were not adequate for a teeming slum where perhaps most of the householders were engaged in the same monotonous trade, so not even their occupations could distinguish them, and some first names were gaining a tiresome popularity, especially Thomas after 1170. The hereditary principle in surnames gained currency first in the South, and the poorer folk were slower to apply it. By the 14th century however, most of the population had acquired a second name. A later instance of the name mentions James Merchant and Susanna Lapine who were married at St. George's Chapel, Mayfair, London in the year 1749. The name is also spelt Lapping Lapenne and Lappine. A notable member of the name was Kenneth Dewey DE LAPP Jr. born 8th November, 1925. He was a Consulting and Structural Engineer. He resides at Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA.
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