Although we cannot be absolutely certain, we believe that the evidence points to this interesting surname being either a variant form of the Berkshire village name "Hulcott" or it derives from a "lost" medieval site in the same area. It is definately of locational origin, it is Olde English pre 10th century, and the derivation is from "hul" meaning a house or shelter and (probably) "cop" -a hill top. What is proven is that recordings are known from at least the time of Henry V111 (see below), as Hulcott, however within twenty five years the spelling is Hul(l)cup(pe), and further variants including Hulcoop appear in the same area over the next century. This is the classic situation which occured throughout the 15th to 17th centuries, when following the Enclosure Acts, tenants were dispossesed and villages cleared. The former inhabitants then took as their surname, the name of their former village, but as few could spell, and dialect played a major part, spelling transpositions often took place. In this case examples of the recordings show a clear trend, these recordings include Elizabeth Hullcuppe who married Thomas Stone at Steventon on October 8th 1564, and Marry Hulcoop, who lived upto his name by marrying Emma Martin at Basingstoke on November 11th 1657, in the "reign" of Oliver Cromwell. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Anne Hulcot, which was dated September 13th 1540, christened at Little Wittenham, Berkshire, during the reign of King Henry V111, known as "Bluff King Hal", 1510 - 1547. 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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