Metonymic job descriptive nickname surnames were very popular in medieval times, and this may be an example. If so, it derives from the Olde English pre 7th Century "Fugol" meaning "a domestic fowl" or in fact a "breeder or seller of Fowls". The popularity of the occupation can be judged by the fact that there are at least twenty variant spellings which include Fowle, Vowell, Fuel and even the extraordinary "Pheuall", recorded in 1706 when Susanna of that spelling married a Joseph Baile at St. Margaret Pattens Church, London. Rebekah Fuel is recorded at Southwark in 1696, whilst Susanna Fewill married William Kent at Enfield, Middlesex on February 10th 1763. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Margarett Fewell, which was dated October 12th 1578, christened at St. Giles Church, Cripplegate, London, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, "Good Queen Bess", 1558 - 1603. 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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