This interesting name is an occupational surname for someone who bred and trained hawks. It derives from the Middle English 'haueker', a development of the Old English 'hafocere' meaning 'hawker' or 'falconer'. Hawking was an important medieval sport and the training of hawks for the feudal lord was a popular practice in lieu of rent. The Magna Charta, 1215, conceded the right of any free man to keep hawks for his own use. The name was first recorded in the early 13th Century (see below). One Robert le Hauker appears in the Subsidy Rolls of Suffolk, 1283. Edward Hawker was christened on November 26th 1626 in St. Andrew's, Holborn, London. On May 15th 1654, Walter Hawker married Elizabeth Marcie in St. Botolph's, Bishopsgate, London. The name is now mainly found in the South West Midlands of England. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert le Hauekere, which was dated 1214, Curia Rolls of the King for Gloucestershire, during the reign of King John, known as 'Lackland', 1199-1216. 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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