Mertoun History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
Mertoun is one of the many names that the Normans brought with them when they conquered England in 1066. The Mertoun 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 Mertoun family
The surname Mertoun 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 Mertoun family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Mertoun 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 Mertoun History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Mertoun Spelling Variations
Before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Sound was what guided spelling in the Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Mertoun family name include Mertone, Merton, Merten, Mertens, Mertin, Mertins, Murton, Myrton, Myrtone, Mertoun and many more.
Early Notables of the Mertoun family (pre 1700)
Another 50 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Mertoun Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Mertoun family
To escape the political and religious chaos of this era, thousands of English families began to migrate to the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. The passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe; however, those who made the voyage safely were encountered opportunities that were not available to them in their homeland. Many of the families that reached the New World at this time went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of the United States and Canada. Research into various historical records has revealed some of first members of the Mertoun family to immigrate North America: 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)