The surname of RINGLER was derived from the old English name 'hringan' meaning a bell-ringer. It was also a derivation of the old English name 'wringan' meaning 'to wring or squeeze', perhaps a wringer or presser of cheese. The name was taken to Ireland by settlers where it is O'Rinn in Gaelic, a name meaning 'spear'. The main sept of this name was and is located in east Cork. Members of minor septs do not appear frequently in official medieval records until the time of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I when the Fiants covered the whole country. There is a place named Rynn in the parish of Mohill, County Leitrim and the surname has been found there. The name is also spelt RINKE, RINK, RINGS and RINGER. Early records of the name mention Eilwinus Robert Ring, 1207, County Norfolk. Richard le Chesewryngere was documented in 1281 ibid. Hugo [le] Ringere was recorded in 1207 in the County of Lancashire. William le Ringere was documented in County Yorkshire in the year 1327. William Ring of Yorkshire, was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. Most of the European surnames in countries such as England, Scotland and France were formed in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. The process had started somewhat earlier and had continued in some places into the 19th century, but the norm is that in the tenth and eleventh centuries people did not have surnames, whereas by the fifteenth century most of the population had acquired one. Surnames as we know them today were first assumed in Europe from the 11th to the 15th Century. They were not in use in England or in Scotland before the Norman Conquest, and were first found in the Domesday Book. The employment in the use of a second name was a custom that was first introduced from the Normans. They themselves had not long before adopted them. It became, in course of time, a mark of gentler blood, and it was deemed a disgrace for gentlemen to have but one single name, as the meaner sort had. It was not until the reign of Edward II (1307-1327) it became general practice amongst all people.
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