This name MARDIS was originally a female given name MAUD, a variant of the Norman name Mathilde, composed of the Germanic elements MAHT (might) and HILD (battle). The learned form Matilda was much less common that the vernacular MAHALT, MAUD and MORDUE. The name was borne in England by the daughter of Henry I, who disputed the throne of England with her cousin Stephen for a number of years (1137-48). In Germany the popularity of the name in the Middle Ages was augmented by its being born by a 10th century saint, wife of Henry the Fowler, and mother of Otto the Great. The name has numerous variant spellings which include Mald, Maude, Mudd, Morde and Maudson. Hereditary surnames were originally imported from France into England during the Norman Conquest of 1066. In the two centuries or so after the Conquest surnames were acquired by most families of major landholders, and many landed families of lesser importance. There appears to have been a constant trickle of migration into Britain between about the years 1200 and 150O, mostly from France and the Low Countries, with a small number of migrants from Scandinavia, Germany, Italy and the Iberian peninsular, and occasional individuals from further afield. During this period groups of aliens settled in this country as for example, the Germans who from the late 15th century onwards settled in Cumbria to work the metal mines. Immigration during this time had only a small effect on the body of surnames used in Britain. In many cases, the surnames of immigrants were thoroughly Anglicised. The late sixteenth century saw the arrival, mostly in London and the south-coast ports of large numbers of people fleeing from the war regions of France. A notable member of the name was Cyril MAUDE (1862-1951) the English actor-manager. He made his name in 'The Second Mrs Tanqueray' and 'The Little Minister', and became associated-manager of the Haymarket Theatre in 1896 until 1905. From 1917 until 1915 he directed his own company at the Playhouse. His son John Cyril MAUDE was an eminent judge and QC and MP for Exeter from 1945 until 1951.
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