This most interesting surname is of Old French or Anglo-Saxon origin. Firstly, it may be a variant of "Huggate", a locational name from a place so called in Yorkshire, which was recorded as "Hughete" in the Domesday Book of 1086. The placename is composed of the Olde English "huc", a point of land, and "geat", a pass. Secondly, and more likely, the surname is a variant of "Hewet", composed of "Hug", a diminutive of "Hugh", and the diminutive suffix "-et"; hence "little Hug, Hugh". Hugh itself derives from the Old French personal name "Hu(gh)e", introduced to Britain by the Normans, and derived from any of the various Germanic compound names with the first element "hug", heart, mind, spirit. Huggett's Lane in Willingdon (Sussex) owes its name to Helwis Hugot, mentioned in the Subsidy Rolls of Sussex in 1296, and Huggett's Farm in Heathfield to one Wilhom Hughet, mentioned in the same source. Isabel Hugate is recorded in Hall's "Sheffield, Hallamshire", in 1440. Isabell Huggett married Robert Barrett on November 6th 1603, at St. Margaret's, Westminster, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert de Hugat, which was dated 1219, witness in the "Assize Court Rolls of Yorkshire", 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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