This interesting surname has a number of possible origins. Firstly, it may have originated as a nickname from the bird, the cock, deriving from the Olde English pre 7th Century "cocc", and applied to a young lad who strutted proudly like a cock. The nickname may also have referred to a natural leader, or an early riser, or a lusty or aggressive individual. It may also have derived from the Olde English personal names "Cocc" or "Cocca", found in placenames, although not on independent record. But as "cock" became a common term for a boy, it may also have been used affectionately as a personal name.The third possibility is that it may be of topographical origin for a "dweller by the hill", deriving from the Olde English "cocc" meaning haycock, heap or hillock. In London it probably originated from the sign of a house or inn. Amongst the early recordings are those of William le Cock, in the rolls and charters of Staffordshire Forest Pleas in 1271, and Ralph Cokelin in the Hundred Rolls of Cambridge, in 1275. In the modern idiom the surname has many variant spellings including Cock, Cocke, Cocks, Cox, and the diminutives Cocklin, Cockling, and Cockin, all meaning the kinsman of Cock. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Aluuinus Coc, which was dated 1086, in the Domesday Book of Cambridgeshire, during the reign of King William 1, known as "The Conqueror", 1066 - 1086. 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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