This interesting surname with variant spelling Bittel is the German form of the English surname Beadle. The name derives from the Old English pre 7th Century "beodan" to bid or command or from the Old High German "bado" a messenger, and was an occupational name for a medieval court official. In the Middle Ages a beadle in England and France was a junior official of a court of justice, responsible for acting as an usher in a court, delivering official notices, making proclamations etc.. By Shakespeare's day a beadle was a sort of village constable, appointed by the parish to keep order. The Buttel's of Westphalie were granted a coat of arms circa 1680, consisting of a gold shield, with a red label in chief (the eldest son during the lifetime of his father bears a label) and three drops of blood in base. The surname is first recorded in the mid 16th Century,(see below). One, Jean Buttel, son of David and Madeline Buttel, was christened on July 3rd 1692, at Threadneedle St., London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Thomasyne Buttell, who married William Albany, which was dated May 31st 1551, in St. Pancras Church, London, during the reign of King Edward V1, "The Boy King", 1547 - 1553. 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.