This interesting and unusual surname is a diminutive of Mule, which is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is from a nickname for a stubborn person, or a metonymic occupational name for a driver of pack-animals, derived from the Middle English (1200 - 1500) "mule", mule, from the Old English pre 7th Century "mul", similar to the Old French "mule", both of which are derived from the Latin "mula". This is an example of that sizeable group of early European surnames that were gradually created from the habitual use of nicknames. The nicknames were given in the first instance with reference to a variety of characteristics, such as physical attributes or peculiarities, mental and moral characteristics, supposed resemblance to an animal's or bird's appearance or disposition, habits of dress, and occupation. The modern surname can be found as Mule, Moule, and Mowl(e), and the diminutives include Mullet and Mullett. Among the recordings in London are the marriage of Thomas Mullett and Elizabeth Sherrrington on April 23rd 1616 at St. Peter's, Cornhill, and the christening of John, son of Andrew and Elizabeth Mullett, on January 5th 1630 at St. Martin-in-the-Fields, Westminster. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of David le Mul, which was dated 1199, The Pipe Rolls of Worcestershire, during the reign of King Richard 1, "The Lionheart", 1189 - 1199. 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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