This unusual and interesting name has two possible origins, the first and most generally applicable being from the Old English pre 7th Century byname or nickname "Draca", meaning "dragon" or "snake", in Middle English "Drake", Old Norse "Draki". The derivation for all these forms is from the Latin "draco", snake, or monster. As a nickname, it would presumably apply to someone formidable and fierce in battle, but it could also be a metonymic "occupational" surname for a standard-bearer, as in "Draker", (1260, Cambridgeshire). "Draca" was used in medieval England to mean a battle-standard as well as a dragon. The name may also be from the Middle English "drake" male of the duck. The final "s" on the name indicates the patronymic, i.e. "son of Drake". One, Awdry Drakes was christened on August 15th 1563 at St. Vedast Foster Lane and St. Michael le Querne, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Leuing Drache, which was dated 1086, The Domesday Book, Hampshire, during the reign of King William 1, The Conqueror, 1066 - 1087. 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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