The surname of HODGES was originally a baptismal name 'the son of Roger' an ancient personal name which was of English origin It was also used as an occupational, the worker on the land, a labourer. Occupational surnames originally denoted the actual occupation followed by the individual. At what period they became hereditary is a difficult problem. Many of the occupation names were descriptive and could be varied. In the Middle Ages, at least among the Christian population, people did not usually pursue specialized occupations exclusively to the extent that we do today, and they would, in fact, turn their hand to any form of work that needed to be done, particularly in a large house or mansion, or on farms and smallholdings. In early documents, surnames often refer to the actual holder of an office, whether the church or state. Early records of the name mention Hogge (without surname) 1208 London. Edward Hodges of County Lancashire, was recorded in 1377, and William Hodges was documented in County Durham in the same year. Johannes Hodgeson was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. The name was taken early to Scotland by settlers, and Thomas Hodgis who was the burgess of Glasgow in 1487, appears to be the first of the name on record there. Laurance Hoiges was a witness in Glasgow in 1550, and Mariota Hodges appears in Edinburgh in 1625. Robert Hodge, born in Scotland, emigrated to America in 1770 and established the firm of Hodge and Shober, printers. An interesting member of the name was Charles Hodge (1797-1878) the American theologian, born in Philadelphia. In 1822 he became professor at the Princetown Theological Seminary. He founded and wrote a history of the Presbyterian Church in America in 1840. His son, who succeeded his father at Princetown in 1878, wrote 'Outlines of Theology' in 1860. 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.
The associated arms are recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory. Ulster King of Arms in 1884.
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