Recorded in the spellings of Feilden, Fielden and Fielder, this is an English surname. Fielden refers to a person who lived amongst the fields and is the dative plural, whilst Fielder is a good example of a method of creating surnames by adding the suffix '-er' to some topographical term. It is peculiar to the southern counties of Sussex, Surrey, Hampshire, Kent and Essex. The name thus created denoted employment at that place. In both cases the origination is from the Old English pre 7th Century word 'feld', which describes land specifically cleared of forest, but not yet brought into cultivation, or in some case just wide open country, in fact the opposite to the miodern meaning of a fenced area. Early examples of the surname recordings include: Roger Fielden of Leigh, in Lancashire, who in 1574 was the vicar of Leigh, and Francis Fielder who married Martha Woodman on December 16th 1698, at St. James's church, Dukes Place, in the city of London. The first recorded spellings of the family name are those of William de la Felden in the charters of Worcester in the year 1286, and slightly later that of Geoffrey le Felder, which was dated 1327, in the Subsidy Rolls of Sussex. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes known as Poll Tax.