This interesting name derives from the Old English pre 7th Century "munec", (Medieval English "munk") meaning monk, plus the Old English "hus", a house, and was originally given either as a topographical name to one who lived in a house owned by a Monastery, or as an occupational name to a worker at the Monks' house. The surname was first recorded in the latter part of the 14th Century, (see below). On April 24th 1552, Alex Munckus, an infant, was christened in St. James Garlickhithe, London, and on September 19th 1590, Anthonie, son of James Munckus, was christened in Holy Trinity, Goodramgate, Yorkshire. The christening of one, John Monkhouse took place in St. Nicholas, Newcastle upon Tyne, Northumberland, on August 28th 1681, and on October 4th 1749, Richard, Richard Monkhouse and Jane Horton were married in St. Dunstan's, Stepney, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Rogerus del Munkhous, which was dated 1379, The Poll Tax Returns Records of Yorkshire, during the reign of King Richard 11, "Richard of Bordeaux", 1377 - 1399. 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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