The surname of LANDEN was a locational name 'the dweller at the launde' from residence beside an open wood. The name is also spelt LANDE, LAWN, LANDT, Van den LAND, LANDH, LANDELL, LE LAND and LANDBERG, to name but a few. Surnames before the Norman Conquest of 1066 were rare in England having been brought by the Normans when William the Conqueror invaded the shores. The practice spread to Scotland and Ireland by the 12th century, and in Wales they appeared as late as the 16th century. Most surnames can be traced to one of four sources, locational, from the occupation of the original bearer, nicknames or simply font names based on the first name of the parent being given as the second name to their child. Early records of the name mention William de la Lande, who was recorded in the year 1273 in County Oxford. William atte Lande of Yorkshire, was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. Edward Lande was documented in County Lancashire in the year 1400, and Thomas Land appears in Lancashire in 1453. Later instances of the name mention Richard Land and Elizabeth Fuller who were married at St. James's, Clerkenwell, London in the year 1579. Hugh Joanes and Susan Land were married at St. Peter's, Cornhill, London in 1651. 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. Over the centuries, most people in Europe have accepted their surname as a fact of life, as irrevocable as an act of God. However much the individual may have liked or disliked the surname, they were stuck with it, and people rarely changed them by personal choice. A more common form of variation was in fact involuntary, when an official change was made, in other words, a clerical error.
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