This name is of Northern English locational origin from any of the several places thus called, for example, Crosthwaite in Cumberland, Westmoreland and the North Riding of Yorkshire. The latter two were first recorded as Crosthwait in Early Charter Rolls, dated 1190 to 1201, and the former appeared as Crosthwayt in Episcopal Registers of Cumberland, dated 1233, and as Crosthweyt in the 1246 Fine Court Rolls of that county, other variations of the name are Crosswaite and Crossthwaite. The name, in all cases, derives form the Olde Scandinavian "kross" (Old English "cros"), a cross, plus the Scandinavian "thveit", a cleared meadow. The English dialectal term "thwaite" means a low meadow or cleared piece of land hence, "clearing by a cross". The surname was first recorded in the early half of the 14th Century, (see below). On December 19th 1590 Elizabeth Crosthwaite, an infant, was christened in Little Ouseburn, Yorkshire, and on December 8th 1647 Thomas Crosthwaite was christened in St. Michael Spurriergate, Yorkshire. One, Richard Crosthwaite of Kirkby Kendall, was entered in "The Lancashire Wills Records at Richmond". The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John de Crosthuaite, which was dated 1332, in the "Subsidy Rolls of Cumberland", during the reign of King Edward 111, known as "The Father of the Navy", 1327 - 1377. 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.

Surnames reference. 2013.

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