This is a much changed Olde English topographical name which derives from one of two possible sources. The first is from the elements 'Ac' meaning 'the Oak' and 'ope' - a meeting place. From ancient times right through to the 18th Century the village 'Oak' was the meeting place for many communities and this is seen in such villages as Acomb, in Yorkshire. The second possible origin is also Olde English and a variant of 'Acca's hop' with 'hop' being a marsh or water meadow and 'Acca' a personal name which coincidentally was also a derivative of 'Ac' - The Oak! The name development includes Antony Ecop (1642, Stepney) to Nicholas Ecob who married Elizabeth Thomson at St. Pauls, Westminster on February 13th 1703. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Ecoppe, which was dated November 21st 1547, married Agnes Byssey at St. Margarets, Westminster, during the reign of King Edward VI, 'The Boy King', 1547 - 1554. 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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