This name is of English locational origin from any of the various places thus called. The Yorkshire Dentons hail from Denton in the parish of Otley in the west Riding, first recorded as Dentun in the Anglo Saxon Chronicles c.972. Other places so named, are in Kent, Lancashire, Cumberland, Durham, Lincolnshire etc.. The name, in all cases derives from the Olde English pre 7th Century element "denu" meaning a valley, plus "tun" a farm or settlement. Hence "the settlement in the valley". The surname from this source is first recorded in the latter half of the 10th Century, (see below). One, William de Denton is recorded in the 1271, Fine Court Rolls of Lincolnshire and a Richard Denton appears in Yorkshire Records (1403). On August 21, 1635, one, Jacob Denton embarked from London on the ship "Thomas" bound for Virginea. He was one of the earliest recorded namebearers to enter America. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Aelfweard aet Dentune. which was dated 972, The Anglo - Saxon Chronicles. during the reign of King Edgar (of England) 959 - 975. 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.