Surname Saturday – Astin

I have only seven Astin’s so far in my family tree – it is a name I haven’t researched very much.  The earliest Astin is my 3x great grandfather Robert who was born about 1805 in Wakefield, West Yorkshire.  The other six are Robert’s children including my 2x great grandmother Ann who was born about 1831 in Rough Lee, Lancashire.

According to surnamedb Astin is of Old Scandinavian (Norse) origin, and is a Norman form of the Old Norse personal name “Asketill”.  It was apparently a popular male personal name before the Norman Conquest of 1066, having been introduced by Viking invaders many years earlier.

The name can be found in the Domesday Book of 1086 as “Aschil”.  There is a Robertus filius (a son of) Astin mentioned in 1219 in the Assize Court Rolls of Yorkshire.

The surname itself was first recorded in the early 13th Century, and one Hugh Astyn was listed in the Assize Court Rolls of Yorkshire in 1297.  Also John Asketyn and William Hastin were both noted in the Assize Court Rolls of Kent in 1317.

Recordings from London Church Registers include: the marriage of Ales Astin and Amys Allin at St. Margaret’s, Westminster, on April 13th 1602, and the marriage of Henrie Astin and Jane Ginninges on October 16th 1615, at St. Dunstan’s, Stepney. There is a William Astin buried in the parish of St. Michael’s, in the Barbadoes, on July 30th 1678.

Modern day variants  include Askin, Astins, Ashken, Haskin, Haskins and Hasting. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Astin, which was dated 1230, in the “Pipe Rolls of Devonshire”


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