Last name: Wormald

This interesting and unusual name is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a locational surname deriving from either of the places called 'Wormald' in the parishes of Barkisland and Rishworth in West Yorkshire, or from the place called 'Wormhill' in Derbyshire. The placename 'Wormald' means 'Wulfrun's spring, or stream', derived from the Old English pre 7th Century female personal name 'Wulfrun', composed of the elements 'wulf', wolf and 'run', secret, with the Northern English 'waell(a)', spring, stream; the excrescent 'd' of Wormald does not appear until the 17th Century. The place name 'Wormhill' is recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086 as 'Wruenete', and means either 'Wyrma's hill' or 'hill frequented by reptiles', from the Old English personal name or byname 'Wyrma', 'serpent', or 'wyrm', serpent, reptile, with 'hyll', hill. The surname can be found as Wormald, Wormhall, Wormal, Wormell, Warmoll or Wormull. The marriage of John Wormald and Mary Maud was recorded in Halifax, Yorkshire, on January 16th 1658. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Alexander de Wormwall, which was dated 1379, The Yorkshire Poll Tax Returns, during the reign of King Richard 11, 'Richard of Bordeaux', 1377-1399. 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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