This Scottish name is derived from the Old English pre 7th Century Lang meaning 'long' or 'tall', and would have been used as a nickname to describe such a person. It may also be derived from the Gaelic O Longain 'descendant of Longan', a personal name coming from long or tall. Variations in the idiom of the spelling include Lang, Long, Lange, Lainge, Laying, etc.. Recordings include one Janet Laing who married Robert Lawson in Edinburgh on April 20th 1597. Margaret Laing married Andrew Scott in Edinburgh on May 13th 1600. Sarah Lang married George Jackson on the December 14th 1615 in Edinburgh, and on John, son of Ellis Lange, was christened at St. Giles, Cripplegate, London, on the November 25th 1621. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Thomas Laing, which was dated 1357, at Drumfries, Scotland, during the reign of King David 11 of Scotland, 1324 - 1371. 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.