This interesting surname, with variants Crosfield, Crossfeld etc, is of English locational origin from one of the estimated seven to ten thousand villages and hamlets that have now disappeared from maps in Britain. The prime cause of these "disappearances" was the enforced "clearing" and dispersal of the former inhabitants to make way for sheep pastures at the height of the wool trade in the 14th Century. Natural causes such as the Black Death of 1348, also contributed to the lost village phenomenon. The original place, believed to have been situated in Yorkshire is composed of the elements, "Cross", from the Old English "cruc" and the Old Norse "kross", a cross, plus the second element "field", from the Old English "feld", pasture, open country. The initial element may also be the Old Scandinavian personal name "Krossa". The Yorkshire church registers record the following entries: Alice Walker married Edmund Crossfeld at Methley Yorkshire on November 20th 1559, and Ann Crosfeld was christened there also on November 15th 1560. George Crosfield (1758-1847) was a botanist and elder in the Society of Friends in 1815. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Jhon Crosfeld, which was dated September 29th 1559, who was christened at Rothwell in Yorkshire, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, known as "Good Queen Bess", 1558 - 1603. 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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