- This interesting and unusual surname is a variant of Matthew which is of medieval English origin, ultimately from the Hebrew given name "Matiyahu", which translates as gift of God. Mathew is first recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086 in the Latin form Matthaeus, which in France became "Mathieu". It is likely that the name was first introduced into England by the Normans after the Conquest of 1066, where it became extremely popular first as a personal name and later as a surname giving rise to numerous patronymic forms, such as Mattson, Matthews, and Matts. Recorded in St. Botolph-without-Aldgate on July 31st 1608 is the christening of one Anne Matson. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Thomas Mateson, which was dated 1379, Poll Tax Returns of Yorkshire, during the reign of King Richard 11, "Richard of Bordeaux", 1377 - 1399. 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.