This interesting surname of English origin with variant spellings Linny, Linney, Lynney, Lynny, etc., is derived from the Old English pre 7th Century male given name Lindgifu, or the female given name Lindgeofu meaning "shield -gift". The personal name is recorded as Linniue (1185) in "The Records of the Templars in England in the 12th Century". The surname dates back to the late 13th Century, (see below). Further recordings include one Richard Lyneue (1327) "The Subsidy Rolls of Suffolk". Church recordings include son of John Lynney, who was christened on February 19th 1552 at St. Martin's Ludgate, London, William Linney was christened on October 22nd 1559, at St. Gregory by St. Paul, London, and Martha Linney married Joseph Huxley on June 28th 1720, at St. Lawrence Jewry and St. Mary Magdalene, Mill Street, London. One John Linney (aged 20), a famine emigrant, sailed from Liverpool aboard the Pacific bound for New York on January 20th 1847. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Geoffrey Lyneue, which was dated 1279, in the "Hundred Rolls of Cambridgeshire", during the reign of King Edward 1, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. 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.