This is a surname of Olde English origins. It is locational and derives from hamlets in Yorkshire and Cumberland, in England. Recorded as "Mosdale" in the Cumberland rolls of the year 1301, known as 'The Inquisitions post mortem', and as "Mosedal" in the similar 1308 land charters, the name translates 'the valley with the moss bog'. During the Middle Ages, many remote villages 'died' as a result of plague, land enclosure, and in this case raids from the Scottish borders. The former inhabitants as they moved south took, or were given, as their identification the name of their former village. As 'the name' spread further from its original homestead the spelling became more varied, thus resulting in a large number of variants, some of which seem to have little relation to the original form. In this case the surname can be found as Mosdall, Mowsdale, Mosdill, Mowsdell, Mosdell, Mossdale, Mosedall, Moulsdale, Mousdall, and Mosedale. Early church recordings taken at random include those of Elyzabeth Mosdall who married Antonius Hugons on January 29th 1587, at St. Martin in the Fields, Westminster, and Jone, the daughter of Thomas and Anne Mosedall, christened on August 30th 1606, at St. Giles' Cripplegate. Richard Moulsdale married Allice Penson at St Dunstans in the East, Stepney, on January 16th 1616, whilst Jo: Mosdell aged 24, is recorded as being a passenger on the 'shippe Doreset, John Flower, Master, bound for Bormodos (the Bermuda Islands) on 'Tricessimo die Septembris, 1635'. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Edmonde Mowsdale, which was dated November 13th 1552, marriage to Jane Keyton, at St. Margaret's, Westminster, London, during the reign of King Edward V1, known as "The Boy King", 1547 - 1553. 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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