This interesting surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a locational name from either of two places called Elwick. One in Durham, which was recorded as "Ailewick" in the 1150 Early Yorkshire Charters, and as "Ellewic" in the 1215 Pipe Rolls of the county, and one in Northumberland, recorded as "Ellewic" in the 1195 Charter Rolls. The derivation of the name is from the Olde English pre 7th Century personal name "Ella", with "wic", village, hamlet, dwelling-place, farm; hence, "Ella's dwelling-place". During the Middle Ages, when migration for the purpose of job-seeking was becoming more common, people often took their former village name as a means of identification, thus resulting in a wide dispersal of the name. In the modern idiom the surname can be found as Elwick and Ellick. Recordings of the surname from English Church Registers include: the marriage of Priscilla Ellick and Beniamyn Stephen on July 18th 1626, at St. Erney, Cornwall; the marriage of William Ellick and Mary Hancock at St. James' Clerkenwell, London, on December 22nd 1715; and the marriage of Arthur Ellick and Margery Gibson on January 22nd 1725, at Lythe, Yorkshire. A Coat of Arms granted to the family depicts a black wolf's head erased on a silver shield, the Crest being a black wolf's head erased. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Ralph Elwyke, which was dated 1512, in the "Register of the Freemen of the City of York", during the reign of King Henry V111, known as "Bluff 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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