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BUTTERFIELD Family HistoryThis very interesting surname is locational and derives from a 'lost' hamlet which was originally on the border of the West Riding of Yorkshire and Lancashire, near Todmorden. The modern surname is almost equally recorded in both counties, although almost all very early recordings are from Yorkshire, except oddly the very first as shown below. The development is the from the Olde English pre 7th century 'butor' meaning a bittern, a bird of the heron family renowned for its call at mating time, whilst the ancient 'feld' originally described an open area, one which had been cleared for agriculture. Paradoxically the later middle English 12th century 'field' actually describes a 'fenced area'...
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