Recorded in the spellings of Mulles, Mullis and Mulliss, this unusual surname can be either topographic or occupational. It derives from the the medieval English term "mullehus," itself coming from the Olde English pre 7th Century "mylen" and meaning a mill, plus a dialectal spelling of "hus" -a house. As such it describes either a person who lived at such a place, or perhaps worked there. The more popular surname 'Mills' may derive from the same origins, although it in most cases it does describe somebody who lived by 'mills'. The surname as Mulles/Mullis/Mulliss is chiefly recorded in the English Midlands and examples of the early recordings include Joan del Milhous of Wakefield, Yorkshire, in the pipe rolls of that city for the year 1331, whilst on July 5th 1608, Anne Mulles, the daughter of Wyllem Mulles, was christened at Alveston. On July 7th 1678 Ann Mullis, the daughter of Matthew Mullis was christened at Pillerton Hersey, and on September 198th 1845, Arabella Emma Mulliss married Harry Clews at Nuneaton. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Henry del Melnehous. which was dated 1327, in the pipe rolls of the county of Derbyshire, during the reign of King Edward III, known as "The father of the navy", 1327 - 1377. 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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