This unusual surname derives from the Old French personal name "Gace", which is a Central French hypocoristic form of the Old German given name "Waz(z)o", deriving from a compound Germanic name with a first element "wad" meaning "to go". The personal name is recorded as "Gazo" in the Domesday Book of 1086, and as Gace de Gisorz (1225) in the "Rotuli Litterarum Clausarum". The surname dates back to the early 13th Century (see below). Further recordings include John Gace (1230) in the Pipe Rolls of Hampshire, and Godesman Gase (1232) in the Calendar of Patent Rolls of Lincolnshire. Variant forms of the surname range from Gashe, Gasch and Gasche, to Gaish. London Church Records show the marriage of Samwell Gashe to Alice Morecocke on September 4th 1581, at St. Margaret's, Westminster, and the christening of Simon, son of Adam Gash, on February 10th 1605, also at St. Margaret's, Westminster. One William Gash, a famine emigrant, sailed from Liverpool aboard the "John-Ravenel", bound for New York, on April 20th 1847. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Gace, which was dated 1224 - 1225, in the "Calendar of Patent Rolls of Wiltshire", during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. 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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