This is a surname of Anglo-Scottish origins. It is almost certainly locational and possibly from the village of Lickle in the county of Lancashire, or from Likleyhead Castle in the county of Aberdeenshire. Failing these then it is probably from a now 'lost' medieval village of which the only known reminder in the late 20th century is the surname itself. It is known that the name has been recorded in Scotland since 1612 when one Henry Likly was fined in Aberdeen itself for 'quarrelling'. He must have quarrelled very loudly, or perhaps he chose the wrong person for his quarrel. However later recordings show a considerable change in the habits of the nameholders as for over one hundred and twenty years successive generations of Likly's were the ministers of Medrum in Aberdeenshire, from about 1700 to 1820. In England the surname spelling seems to be more varied and include Likly, Likely, Lickley, Likeley and Leckley. Whether these are directly related to the Scottish nameholders is uncertain although there has always been strong links between Aberdeen and London in particular. Recordings in the surviving registers of the city of London include Anne Likely who was christened at St Dunstans in the East, Stepney, on July 6th 1660, and curiously the recording of Ann Leckley who married Will Roberts also at St Dunstans, on May 24th 1665.
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