Recorded in several spellings including Cochet, Cockett, Cockette and Cockitt, and closely related to the similar surname of Cockin, this is an English surname. It has several possible origins. The first is from the Old English pre 7th century word "cocc", meaning a cockbird, but more specifically in medieval times it was applied as a nickname to a young man, one who behaved like a cock, from which one can draw many conclusions. The suffix "-et(te)" is a shortform of the French "petit" introduced into Britain after the Norman Conquest of 1066, and used as a diminutive to describe the son of Cocc. Secondly the name may be occupational for a baker of cokin or cocket bread, and referring to a leavened loaf, whilst the third possiblity is from the French "cokette". This describes a seal used by the Royal Customs House, and hence would have been a metonymic nickname for a customs officer or official. Early examples of recordings include John Cokin in the Curia Regis charters of the county of Essex in 1207, Ralph Cocumbred appears in the Friary Rolls of Leicester in 1209, and John Coket in the Assize Rolls of Warwickshire in 1221. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard Cochet in the pipe rolls of Essex in the year 1170, during the reign of King Heny 11nd of England, 1154 - 1189. Throughout the centuries surnames in every country have continued to "develop," often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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