The district is named after its headquarters town. Lalitpur has ancient history. It has been mentioned in Yagya Puran, Vishnu Puran and Varah Puran which are the oldest scriptures of the world, said to be about 5000 years old. It has also been referred in Ramayan as well as in Mahabharat. Tradition has it that Raja Sumer Singh who hailed from Daccan, founded the town Lalitpur and named it after his wife name Lalita. This area was under the possession of Gonds. It was taken from Gonds early in the sixteenth century by Gobind Bundela and his son Rudra Pratap. Later on, it was included in Bundela state of Chanderi.
Lalitpur District was formerly part of the state of Chanderi, founded in the 17th century by a Bundela Rajput who was descended from Rudra Pratap of Orchha. Chanderi, along with most of Bundelkhand, came under Maratha hegemony in the 18th century. Daulat Rao Sindhia of neighboring Gwalior annexed Chanderi state in 1811. . In 1812 it became the headquarters of colonel Baptist who was appointed by Sindhiya to manage Chanderi when it came under his control. In 1844, the former state of Chanderi was ceded to the British, and became the Chanderi District of British India, with Lalitpur town as the district headquarters. The British lost the district in the Indian Rebellion of 1857, and it was not reconquered until late 1858. In 1861, the portion of the district west of the Betwa, including Chanderi, was returned to Gwalior, and the remainder was renamed Lalitpur District. In 1891 Lalitpur and Jhansi districts were united and it became a sub-division of Jhansi district. In the same year, it was included in Allahabad division. Lalitpur was again made a separate district on 01.3.1974 for administrative convenience and proper development. It was carved out of tahsils Lalitpur and Mahrauni of district Jhansi. Lalitpur is really not only the heartland but also heartshaped district of Bundelkhand Region. It is joined to Jhansi District of Uttar Pradesh by a narrow corridor to the northeast, but is otherwise almost completely surrounded by Madhya Pradesh state; to the east lays Tikamgarh District, to the south Sagar District, and to the west Ashoknagar and Shivpuri districts.