The surname of KEDDY was a baptismal name - the son of Adie - a pet form of Adam. The name meant 'red-earth'. Early records of the name mention John Kede, Scotsman, shipwrecked at Holtchan, County Norfolk in 1388. The first people in Scotland to aquire fixed surnames were the nobles and great landowners, who called themselves, or were called by others, after the lands they possessed. Surnames originating in this way are known as territorial. Formerly lords of baronies and regalities and farmers were inclined to magnify their importance and to sign letters and documents with the names of their baronies and farms instead of their Christian names and surnames. The abuse of this style of speech and writing was carried so far that an Act was passed in the Scots parliament in 1672 forbidding the practice and declaring that it was allowed only to noblemen and bishops to subscribe by their titles. John Kady is in record in Dysart, 1577 and Margaret Keddie was recorded in the parish of Roberton in 1623. James Keddie was bewitched in Weyms in 1630, and Alexander Ceddy was fined for 'straicks and ryot' in 1664 James Keadie was a hatmaker in Edinburgh in 1616. Alexander Ceddy was fined for 'staicks and ryot' in 1664. 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according to the accepted theory, was due to the Norman Conquest of 1066 when Old English personal-names were rapidly superseded by the new christian names introduced by the Normans.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. The associated coat of arms is recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory. Ulster King of Arms in 1884.
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