Recorded in the spellings of De La Perrel, De La Perrelle, Perrel, Perrelle, and possibly others, this is a surname of confused origins. Whilst clearly of some French antecedents, it is recorded in the Channel Islands and specifically Jersey from at least the reign of King Charles 1st (1625 - 1649). In the isle of Guernsey there is a bay called Perrel, and therefore it is not unreasonable to assume that at least for some nameholders the surname is locational from this place, but we have no absolute proof. The surname recordings in France give no clue as to whether it is locational perhaps from a place in France called Perrel or Perrelle, or whether as seems likely, it is one of the diminutives of the personal name Pierre (Peter). Certainly as Perrin, Perrein, Perrel and Perrelle, it is recorded in both France and England. Peter or Pierre derive from the Ancient Greek "Petros" meaning rock, St Peter being the rock upon which Christ is said to have founded the Christian church. The personal name was rarely found in Northern Europe before the famous crusades of the 12th century. These expeditions were early examples of military cooporation in that knights were sent from virtually every country to form the army which attempted to seize Jerusalem back from the Muslims. In this they were wholly unsuccessful, but many biblical names such as this one, were brought back by survivors, and given to any subsequent children in honour of the father's exploits. French register records are notoriously poor, most being destroyed during the famous or infamous Revolution of 1792, as instruments of the secret police of former monarchs. Examples of recordings include in the Channel Islands, Phillipe De La Perrelle who married Marie Le Brocq at St Quen, Jersey, on August 8th 1636, and in France Pierre Alexis Perrelle who married Marie Dagneau on September 1st 1761 at St Germain en Laye, Seine-et-Oise.
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