This unusual and interesting name has two possible related, origins. The first of these is a medieval topographical surname, denoting residence from the Middle English word 'crok', from the Olde Norse 'krokr'. The name may also be a metonymic occupational surname for a maker, seller, or user of hooks, derived from the same source. The second possible origin is from the Olde Norse nickname 'krokr', meaning 'crooked' or 'bent', and originally used of someone with a hunch back, although it was already being used as a personal name in the early Middle Ages in England. On January 21st 1588, Thomas Crooke married Ellen Barnefeeld at St. Dunstan's, Stepney and William Crooke married Ann Powell, on October 7th 1618 at St. Mary Aldermary, London. One William Crooke was an early emigrant to America, leaving London on the 'Thomas and John' in June 1635, bound for Virginia. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Rainald Croc, which was dated 1086, The Domesday Book, Hampshire, during the reign of King William 1, The Conqueror, 1066 - 1087. 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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