This interesting surname of Anglo-Saxon origin with variant spellings Murkit, Murket, Murkett, etc., is a dialectal variant of the locational name Murcot, in Oxfordshire recorded as Morkote in the Register of Osney Abbey of 1149, and Murcott in Wiltshire, deriving from the Olde English pre 7th Century "more" meaning "moor" plus "cot" "cottage, shelter", hence "cot on a moor". The surname dates back to the mid 17th Century (see below). Recordings of the variants include John Murkit who married Mary Stubbs on February 1st 1718 in the Church of St. Marylebone, St. Mary Street, Marylebone Road, London, and Mary Murkett who married John Gibson on December 15th 1728 in the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Aldermanbury. During the Middle Ages when it was increasingly common for people to migrate from their birth-place to seek work further afield the custom developed that they would adopt the place-name as a means of identification. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Samuel Murkit which was dated 1663, witness at the christening of his daughter Sarah, at "St. Botolph's Church, Bishopsgate, London", during the reign of King Charles 11, known as "The Merry Monarch", 1660 - 1685. 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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