Last name: Elcum
This interesting name is of English origin and is a dialectal variant of a locational name Elcomber from a place so called in Wiltshire. The derivation of this placename is "Ella" a personal name and the Old English pre 7th Century "Cumb", a deep hollow or valley. This word "Cumb" is itself a derivation of a Celtic word "Cwn" with the same meaning. The earliest recording of the placename appears as Eleome in the Domesday Book of 1086, and in the Pipe Rolls of Wiltshire in 1168 at Ellecumba. During the Middle Ages it became increasingly necessary for people to migrate from their birth place to seek work elsewhere and it became customary to adopt their village name as a means of identification, thus resulting in the wide dispersal of the name. In the modern idiom, the variants include Elcom(e), El(e)cum, Elcomb(e). One Elizabeth Ellcome the infant daughter of William and Alice Ellcome was christened at St. Sepulchre, London on August 26th, 1677. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Margarett Ealcome married Thomas Cooke, which was dated 31st, August 1643, during the reign of King Charles 1, 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.
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