This interesting surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is locational from Leyland, in Lancashire, meaning fallow or uncultivated land, from the Olde English pre-7th Century "laegeland" and the Middle English "layland". The placename itself was recorded as "Lailand" in the Domesday Book of 1086; "Leilandia" in the Lancashire Pipe Rolls, circa 1160; and "Leylond" in the Lancashire Assize Rolls of 1246. The surname may also derive from Ealand in Lincolnshire, from the Olde English "ealand", island, land by water.Walter de Leilande was mentioned in the Pipe Rolls of Lincolnshire in 1205. Finally, the surname may be topographical for a dweller by the fallow or untilled land from the Olde English word "laege", fallow. Robert de Layland was recorded in the 1219 Assize Rolls of Yorkshire, while the "Calendar of Plea and Memoranda City of London", mentions William de Leylond in 1339. A notable namebearer was Joseph Bentley Leyland (1811 - 1851), a sculptor, whose most important works include a statue of Dr. Beckwith of York, in York Minister and a group of African Bloodhounds. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Aldulf de Leilande, which was dated 1203, in the "Feet of Fines of Kent", during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. 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.
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