Recorded in the five known forms of Gilderoy, Guilderoy, Gildroy, Gelderey, and Gilldarey, this is a rare and unusual surname. It is probably of French and Huguenot origins, although it must be said, that this is not proven. What is fairly certain is that the name is first recorded in England in the year 1703 when a Sarah Guilderoy married John Taylor at the church of St Dunstans in the East, Stepney, in the city of London. The significance of this recording is that the church of St Dunstans was famous for being the church of the "foreigner". This was not necessarily some one from another land although that would seem to be the case here, the next county in England was often just as "foreign" in ancient times. However over the centuries St Dunstans has attracted more than its fair share of people from other places including Europe. Also the begining of the 18th century was the time when the flood of Huguenot refugees escaping from catholic France was at its height. The English have never been very good at spelling foreign names, and even more so in those far off days. It is our opinion that this surname is a corruption of another such as the popular "de Roy" or "Deroy", to which has been "fused" first name of Gille. We have not been able to prove this theory, but we can say that there does not appear to be any similar spelling to Guilderoy or Gilderoy anywhere in Europe or the British Isles.
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