Recorded in several spelling forms including Brickdale, Brigdale, Briggdale, Brigdell and Brigdall, this is an English surname. It originates either from a 'lost' medieval village, or possibly from the tiny hamlet of Bridgball, near the village of Brendon, in the county of Devon, or perhaps the village of Birkdale, in Lancashire. There does not appear to be any other place, site or village recorded in any known gazetter of the British Isles, whose spelling comes close to any of the known surname forms. Even these names are open to suspicion, and logic suggests that the correct surname spelling would or should have been the Olde English pre 7th century 'brycg halh', meaning 'the place by the causeway', raised causeways called 'brycg's being the normal means of allowing a road to pass over wetlands. Only after the Norman Conquest of 1066 was the word used to refer to what we now call a bridge, because in anycase before then there were no 'bridges' only fords. Nethertheless this is one of the earliest surnames to be found in the surviving church registers of the diocese of London, the first place to have compulsory register recordings. These examples include: John Brikdale (Birkdale?) who married Joane Rokennan (Rockingham?) at St Antholins church, Budge Row, on November 27th 1551 in the city of London, and James Brigdale, a witness at the famous church of St Mary-le-Bone, Marylebone, on August 28th 1679.
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