This interesting and unusual name is of Medieval English origin and is locational from a so called 'lost' village, likely to have been situated in Hampshire, which is suggested by the fact that there are numerous recordings in that County. The derivation is from the Old English pre 7th Century personal name 'Daecca' or perhaps 'Daegga', with 'wiell', a well or a spring, and it is interesting to note that a place called Dagnell, in neighbouring Berkshire, has the same derivation for its first element. The phenomenon of the 'lost' village was a result of enforced land clearance during the 12th and 13th Centuries, at the height of the wool trade, to make way for sheep pasture. It is estimated that there are between seven and ten thousand such villages that have disappeared from British maps. One Joan Dagwell was christened in Northwood on August 30th 1546. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Ralph Dagwell (marriage to Alice Forwads), which was dated March 24th 1538, Northwood, Hampshire, during the reign of King Henry V111, 'Good King Hal', 1509-1547. 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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