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Northern English: habitational name from any of various places so called from Old English hramsa ‘wild garlic’ (or possibly the genitive case of the Old English byname Ram(m) ‘ram’) + denu ‘valley’. There are villages so named in Essex, Kent, Oxfordshire, and Warwickshire, but the surname is most common in Yorkshire, where there are several minor places so named, Ramsden in the parish of Kirkburton being a well-recorded instance.