This most interesting and unusual surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a variant of Scholes, itself a topographical name for someone who lived in a rough hut or shed, from the Northern Middle English "scale, schole", from the Olde English pre 7th Century "skali", a hut, shed. It may also be a habitational name from one of the various places named with this word, for example Scholes in Yorkshire, or Scales in Lancashire and Cumberland. Topographical surnames were created early, as both man-made and natural features in the landscape provided easily recognisable distinguishing surnames in the small communities of the Middle Ages. During the Middle Ages, when migration for the purpose of job-seeking was common, people often used their former village name as a means of identification. Early examples include Adam de Scoles (Lancashire, 1285), and Thomas del Scales (Cumberland, 1332). One Alice Chouli was christened on May 3rd 1561, at Leigh, Lancashire, and Rychard Chowle married Ellen Street, also at Leigh, on November 5th 1577. William Choules married May Baden on December 25th 1823, at St. Pancras, in London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard des Scoles, which was dated 1275, in the "Court Rolls of the Manor of Wakefield", Yorkshire, during the reign of King Edward 1, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. 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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