This is an interesting name of English origin which is topographical for a person who lived in a valley, and derives from the Olde English pre 7th Century 'dael', Middle English 'dale', a valley. The addition of the 's' makes it the genitive case i.e., 'of the dale', thus denoting a person from the valley. This surname may also be locational arising from any of the numerous locations called by this word, as seen in the names of such places as Dalwood, (Dorset), Dalham, (Kent) and Dawley, (Worcestershire). The variant 'Deal' comes from the Kentish form 'del', which is a place name in Kent. One Francis Dales was an early emigrant who sailed from the port of London on 16th April 1635 in the Expectation', to the Island of Providence in the New World, also one John Dales married Mary Cusworth on 12th May 1768 at Sittingbourne, Kent. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Ralph de la Dale, which was dated 1275, Hundred Rolls, Sussex, during the reign of King Edward I, The Hammer of the Scots, 1272 - 1307. 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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