This is an Olde English surname of truly ancient origins. It originates from the pre 7th century Anglo-Saxon compound baptismal name "Aurildis", translating as "fire-strife". This was a typical name of the Dark Ages, when parents gave their children both male and female, names which glorified war, victory, and religion, generally in that order! This was in the period upto the development of the first surnames from about the year 1100. Oriel, the name, has no apparent connection with the famous "Oriel window". This is from the French word "oriol", and seemingly was a term not introduced into England until about the 14th century, well after the development of this surname. The Oriel (sur)name is unusual in that it survived the Norman Invasion of 1066, and the later "crusades" when it became "politically correct" ignore tradiional Saxon names, and to give ones children names which were either French, William and Henry, or biblical, the famous John, Thomas, and Peter syndrome. Many Olde English names were killed off in the three hundred years after 1066, Oriel may have survived because it was thought to be French. Early examples of the name include Oriolda de Endrebi in the Yorkshire rolls for the year 1206, and Robertus Oriold in the pipe rolls of Hereford in 1230. The first hereditary surname recording is probably that of Roger Oriel, in the 1276 charters known as the London Letter Books.
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