Willcott


Willcott
This surname is locational and of Olde English origins. It is sometimes confused with 'Wilcock(s)' but in fact there is no connection. The derivation of this surname, in its many forms, including Wilcott, Willcott, Wilacot, Wilcot, etc. is residential and possibly from the Wiltshire village of 'Wilcot' recorded as early as 943 a.d. as 'Wilcotum' and in the 1086 Domesday Book as 'Wilcote'. The name has nothing to do with 'William', another common error, it descends from the word 'waella' meaning 'a spring', giving a translation of 'the cottage by the spring'. Curiously the surname is not recorded at all in the early rolls of Wiltshire, suggesting that either the original 'Wilcot' village was cleared under the 16th century 'Enclosure Acts', or possibly the surname derives from a now 'lost' medieval village of the same or similar spelling, elsewhere. As some five thousand British surnames derive from 'lost' villages, this is not in itself an unusual possibility. Early examples of the surname recording include David Willcott, the son of Francis and Jane, christened at St Dunstans in the East, Stepney on April 14th 1650, during the 'reign' of Parliament (1649 - 1660), whilst John Wilacote married Mary Higes by Civil Licence in London, on April 11th 1667. The coat of arms has the blazon of a black field, charged with a silver eagle displayed , and a crest of a demi eagle in silver ducally gorged in gold. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Elizabethe Wilcott, which was dated February 1st 1646, who was christened at St Botolphs without Aldergate, London, during the reign of King Charles 1st, known as 'The Martyr', 1625 - 1649. 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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