This interesting and unusual surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a topographical name for a "dweller near the enclosure or shelter for deer or wild beasts". The derivation of the name is from the Olde English pre 7th Century "deor", wild animal, deer (this element is also found in such placenames as Darton, Dyrham, Derby and Dereham), with the Olde English "cot", cottage, shelter for animals. Topographical surnames were among the earliest created, since both natural and man-made features in the landscape provided easily recognisable distinguishing names in the small communities of the Middle Ages. In the modern idiom the surname has many variant spellings, ranging from Dorricott, Darracott, Derricoat and Darycott to Dericot, Derycot and Daricut. Recordings of the surname and its variants from London Church Registers include: the marriage of Hew Derycott and Margarytte Lawse on January 16th 1563 at St. Michael Bassishaw; the christening of Margaret, daughter of Humfrey Derycote on May 10th 1573 at St. Mary Woolnoth; the marriage of Jane Deericote and William Roberte on May 28th 1593 at St. Christopher le Stocks; and the marriage of John Derricott and Margarett Sumton on June 27th 1677 at Allhallows, London Wall. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Arthur Derycot, which was dated January 25th 1544, marriage to Bridget Butler, at St. Mildred Poultry, London, during the reign of King Henry V111, known as "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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