Mertan History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
The name Mertan was brought to England in the wave of migration that followed the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Mertan family lived in one of the places called Merton in South London, Devon, Norfolk. The family also lived in the places named Marton in Cheshire, Cleveland, Humberside, Lincolnshire, Shropshire, the North Riding in Yorkshire and Warwickshire.
There were also places named Martin in Hampshire and Lincolnshire. All of these place-names were derived from the Old English words mere, which means lake or pool, and tun, which means enclosure or settlement. 
Early Origins of the Mertan family
The surname Mertan was first found in Devon, South London, Norfolk or in Oxfordshire. The South London village is technically oldest as it dates back to Saxon times when it was listed as Mertone in 967. The remaining place name were listed as follows in the Domesday Book: Mertone (Devon); Meretone (South London); Mertuna ; and Meretone (Oxfordshire.) 
Great Torrington in Devon was home to some of the family in early times. "At a very early period it gave the title of Baron to its lords, who had the power of life and death throughout the lordship. In 1340, Richard de Merton, in whose possession it then was, erected a castle here, of which the chapel was remaining about the close of the last century (1700)." 
The London Borough of Merton was formed under the London Government Act 1963 and includes the Merton and Morden Urban District. Merton College is one of the constituent colleges of the University of Oxford.
Continued our quest for early records of the surname, some of the earliest records include Adam de Mertuna in 1189 and Thomas de Marton in the Pipe Rolls of Yorkshire in 1212.  The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 lists John de Merton and William de Merton in Oxfordshire, and Walter de Merton in Norfolk. The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 listed Alicia de Merton and Thomas de Merton. 
"In the reign of Henry III., Walter de Merton (c. 1205-1277), lord high chancellor of England, and afterwards Bishop of Rochester, founded [in Merton, Surrey] a seminary of learning, which he subsequently removed to Oxford, on the foundation of Merton College." 
Early History of the Mertan family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Mertan research. Another 132 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1277, 1400, 1394, 1277, 1274, 1585 and 1626 are included under the topic Early Mertan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Mertan Spelling Variations
Norman surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are largely due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England, as well as the official court languages of Latin and French, also had pronounced influences on the spelling of surnames. Since medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings. The name has been spelled Mertone, Merton, Merten, Mertens, Mertin, Mertins, Murton, Myrton, Myrtone, Mertoun and many more.
Early Notables of the Mertan family (pre 1700)
Another 50 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Mertan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Mertan family
Many English families emigrated to North American colonies in order to escape the political chaos in Britain at this time. Unfortunately, many English families made the trip to the New World under extremely harsh conditions. Overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the stormy Atlantic. Despite these hardships, many of the families prospered and went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the United States and Canada. Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the name Mertan or a variant listed above: Richard Merton who settled in Barbados in 1698; William G. Merton landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1876; George Mertens landed in America in 1776.
Related Stories +
- ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
- ^ Page, William (ed), A History of the County of Norfolk. London: Victoria County History, 1906. Print
- ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
- ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
- ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
- ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)