This interesting surname is a patronymic from either of two personal names, the more likely being "Rollo", a Latinized form of the Norman "Rou(l)", equivalent to the medieval English given name "Rolf". The ultimate origin lies in the Germanic "Hrolf", a compound of the Germanic elements "hrod" meaning renown, plus "wulf", a wolf. This was especially popular among Nordic peoples, and seems to have reached England through two channels, pre-Conquest Scandinavian settlers, and through the Norman influence; the usual French term was "Rau(l)". The second probable origin of the surname Rollin(g)s is from a patronymic from "Rowland", a Norman personal name composed of the Old Germanic elements "hrod", renown and "land", territory. This was popular in Europe during the Middle Ages largely as a result of the fame of Charlemagne's warrior of this name. Many of the Northern English Rollin(g)s, acquired their surname from this source. Variations of this surname include Rollingson, Rollinson, Rollason and Rollerson. Recordings of the name from various Church Registers include: the marriage of John Rollings and Grace Gamble at St. Peter's, Leeds, in Yorkshire, on November 30th 1615; and the marriage of Richard Rollings and Margart Fittzar, on February 25th 1689, at St. Katherine's by the Tower, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Rolins, which was dated 1327, in the "Subsidy Rolls of Suffolk", during the reign of King Edward 111, known as "The Father of the Navy", 1327 - 1377. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.

Surnames reference. 2013.

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