This name is of English locational origin from a place in Cumberland now called Muncaster but recorded as Mulcaster circa 1150 in the Pipe Rolls of that county and as Molecaster and Mulecaster in 1190 and 1236 respectively. The first element is either the Olde English pre 7th Century personal byname Mula, from "mul", a mule or the Olde Norse personal name Muli (from "muli", a snout), plus the Olde English "Ceaster" a Roman fort, (Latin "Castra" legionary camp). The surname is first recorded in the early half of the 13th Century, (see below). In 1279 one, Robert de Molecaster appears in "The Hundred Rolls of Cumberland". An interesting namebearer was Richard Mulcaster (1530 - 1611), M.A., Christchurch, Oxford, 1556, and high-master at St. Paul's School, London, 1596 - 1608. The variant spelling Muncaster first appears in Cumbrian Church register in 1577 when on July 28th of that year Jenat Muncaster and James Hall were married in Whicham. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Wlater de Mulecastr, witness, which was dated 1219, The Assize Court Rolls of Yorkshire, during the reign of King Henry II, "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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