This English surname of MAULDIN was an English locational name meaning 'one who came from MAULDEN' (the hill with the monument) in Bedfordshire. It was also a baptismal name meaning 'the son of Mary' and was from the extremely popular medieval female given name from the Latin MARIA. This was the name of the mother of Christ in the New Testament, as well as several other New Testament figures. It derives from the Aramaic MARYAM (Hebrew Miryam), but the vernacular forms have been influenced by the Roman family name MARIUS. The Hebrew name is of uncertain etymology, but perhaps means 'Wished-for child'. A Latin masculine form of the name MARIANUS was applied by Christians to devotees of the Virgin Mary, and lies behind many of the variants that have travelled the world, including MAULKIN, MARIEL, MARRIETTE, MARUSKI, MAROUSEK, MARRISON and many more. 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 most 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.
The earliest of the name on record appears to be Ricardus filius MALKYN, who was recorded in 1279 in County Surrey, England, and John MALEKIN appears in Cornwall in 1297.
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