The surname of DENT was a locational name 'of Dent' a township in the parish of Sedburgh, in the West Riding of Yorkshire. Local names usually denoted where a man held his land, and indicated where he actually lived. Early records of the name mention Osbert Deintie. 1199, County Northumberland. Henry William Deinte, was documented in 1227, County Berkshire. Since the dawn of civilisation the need to communicate has been a prime drive of all higher mankind. The more organised the social structure became, the more urgent the need to name places, objects and situations essential to the survival and existence of the social unit. From this common stem arose the requirements to identify families, tribes and individual members evolving into a pattern in evidence today. In the formation of this history, common usage of customs, trades, locations, patronymic and generic terms were often adopted as surnames. The demands of bureaucracy formally introduced by feudal lords in the 11th century, to define the boundaries and families within their fiefdoms, crystallized the need for personal identification and accountability, and surnames became in general use from this time onwards. Johannes de Dente of Yorkshire listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. John Dent of Warton in Lancashire, was listed in the Wills at Richmond in 1678. Tobias Dent and Edeth Parsones were married at St. George's, Clerkenwell, London in the year 1682. At first the coat of arms was a practical matter which served a function on the battlefield and in tournaments. With his helmet covering his face, and armour encasing the knight from head to foot, the only means of identification for his followers, was the insignia painted on his shield and embroidered on his surcoat, the flowing and draped garment worn over the armour. In many parts of central and western Europe, hereditary surnames began to become fixed at around the 12th century, and have developed and changed slowly over the years. As society became more complex, and such matters as the management of tenure, and in particular the collection of taxes were delegated to special functionaries, it became imperative to distinguish a more complex system of nomenclature to differentiate one individual from another.
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