This unusual and interesting name is a Norman form of the Olde Norse personal name 'Asketill'. The name is composed of the elements 'oss' or 'ass', meaning 'god', with 'ketill', meaning a kettle or sacrificial cauldron, the latter being a common element in Olde Norse personal names. The Norman form, introduced after the Conquest of 1066, is first recorded as a personal name in 'documents relating to the Danelaw' of Leicestershire in 1155 as 'Anketillus', and in 1210 as 'Ankil'. The modern surname can be found in a variety of forms, ranging from 'Anquetil', 'Anketell', and 'Ancketill', to 'Ankill' and 'Antell'. John Ancketill married Catherine Gearey on the 26th June 1694 at St. James's, Dukes Place, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Geoffrey Anketil, which was dated 1209, The Pipe Rolls of Norfolk, during the reign of King John, known as Lackland, 1199 - 1216. 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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