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Lincoln Genealogy and Lincoln Family History Information

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About the Lincoln surname

This ancient surname of Lincoln is of English locational origin. It derives from the city of Lincoln, the county town of Lincolnshire. First recorded as Lindo in the earliest known surviving charter called "Claudii Ptolemaei Geographia", a Roman gazetter dated about the year 150 a.d., it is said that Lindo is identical in meaning with the Welsh "llyn", a lake.This is not surprising as Lincoln was the northern capital of the fen country, later known as East Anglia, a region which from the begining of time upto the 17th century was several hundred square miles of lakes and marshes. Lincoln is first recorded in the fused form of Lindocolina in the famous work of the Rev. Bede known as "Historia Ecclesiastica," in about 730 a.d.

The second element derives from the Latin word "colonia", meaning a colony or settlement. Lincoln was an important administrative centre during the Roman occupation of Britain, and remained so for a thousand years. Locational surnames were usually "from" names. That is to say names given to people after they left their original homes, to move somewhere else. In this case Adam de Lincoln appears in the Poll Tax Returns for the county of Yorkshire in 1379, whilst later William Lincoln is recorded in the Oxford University Register dated 1537.

The Surname Linkhorn later often changed to Lincoln and the first part is from variant spellings Link, Linck, Lince and Linch is of English topographic origin for one dwelling by a bank or slope. The derivation is from the Olde English pre 7th Century "hlinc" translating variously as "a bank separating strips of arable land on a slope, rising ground or a ridge". Dialectual variants of "hlinc" included "linch" and "lench".

The name horn could come from someone who made objects out of horn or a horn blower. It also may be from someone who lived in the settlement of Horn(e) or near a spur or toungue of land.