Recorded as Brockhouse and Brookhouse, this is an English surname. According to the famous Victorian etymologist Canon Charles Bardsley writing in the year 1880, the name is locational from a hamlet called Brookhouse in the parish of Laughton-en-le-Morthen, near the town of Rotherham, in what is now South Yorkshire. However there are several others places called Brookhouse in both Lancashire and Cheshire, and it is possible that they too have provided nameholders. The name does mean the house by the brook. In the 20th century 'brook' is taken to mean a stream, but this was not the original meaning. The word could apply to a lake, stream or branch of a river, and may have particulary referred to drinking water, since the term 'broc' could also apply to a pitcher used for carrying water. In Pre 7ty century Olde English 'house' was originally hus, and usually described a substantial building, one probably built of stone, as against cott, meaning a cottage which was usually smaller and built of wood, wattle, and daub or pitch. It is unclear when the surname was first recorded, but early surviving examples include William del Brokhouses of Lancashire in 1332, and Alicia de Brokehouse in the Poll Tax Rolls of Yorkshire in 1379.
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