This uncommon surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a locational name from a small estate called Cordonley, originally situated in the West Riding of Yorkshire. The component elements of the placename are believed to be the Olde English pre 7th Century personal name "Carda" (of uncertain etymology), plus "ing" people of, and "leah", grove, glade; hence, "the grove of Carda's people". Locational surnames, such as this, were originally given to local landowners, and the lord of the manor, and especially as a means of identification to those who left their birthplace to settle elsewhere. Regional and dialectal differences subsequently produced variations on the original spelling; in the modern idiom the surname is found as: Cordonley, Cordonlay and Cordingley. On June 23rd 1586, Ellen, daughter of William Cordingley, was christened at St. Peter's, Leeds, Yorkshire, and on February 11th 1747, Titus Cordingley and Ann Sherrat were married in Manchester Cathedral, Lancashire. A Coat of Arms granted to the Cordingley family is a silver shield with three azure mullets and a red chief. An arm embowed, vested azure, and holding in the hand an oak branch leaved and acorned proper, emerging out of a gold crown valary, forms the Crest. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Ricardus de Cordonlay, which was dated 1379, in the "Poll Tax Returns Records of Yorkshire", during the reign of King Richard 11, known as "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.