Recorded as Destouches, Touche, Latouche, Delatouche, and possibly others, this is a French or Flemish surname. According to the Dictionnaire Etymologique des Noms de France, it derives from the pre 7th century ancient words "tosche or tousche", meaning a wooded area. This suggests that it was locational or residential for a dweller at a house in a wood. It seems as well that there are a number of villages or houses known as Touche particularly in the west of France, which is also the area from which the majority of the 16th and 17th century Huguenot Protestant refugees fled.The dictionary also suggests in some case the name may have been occupational, and described a skilled carpenter, one who gave a house the final touch or touches in wood. French church register recordings before the 19th century are generally either erratic or non existent, most being destroyed by the revolutionaries of 1792 as tools of the secret police. However some regions did escape, including Meurthe-et-Moselle in the east of the country. Examples of the surname recordings from this departement include those of Claude Destouche of Rosieres de Salines, a village which appears to be the very epi-centre of the surname, or at least of those surviving registers, on August 11th 1692, and Michel Detouche of the same village on January 24th 1702.
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