The surname of LA PLANT was an occupational name 'a gardener or a planter'. The name was derived from the Old French word PLANTE. It was also occasionally used as a nickname for a tender or delicate individual. An early bearer of the name PLANT in Wales, was Ricardo Plant, recorded in 1301 at Ewelowe in the former county of Flint (now part of Clwyd). He was perhaps connected with the Plant family of Macclesfield, Cheshire, whose earliest known ancestor is Ranulf Plont, recorded in 1383. 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. Other records of the name mention William Plantes of the County of Essex in 1262. Robert Plante of the County of Cambridgeshire was documented in the year 1273. Edwarde Plante of Yorkshire, was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379, and William Plant was recorded in Cheshire in 1400. A later instance of the name mentions Symon Plante and Catherine Weaver who were married at St. James's, Clerkenwell, London in 1605. John Plant and Ann Stubbs were married at St. George's, Hanover Square, London in 1809. The bulk of European surnames in countries such as England and France were formed in the 13th and 14th centuries. The process started earlier and continued in some places into the 19th century, but the norm is that in the 11th century people did not have surnames, whereas by the 15th century they did.
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