Recorded in the spellings of Pattle, Patwell, Pedle, Peddle, Peddell, Pedwell, Pettwell, Pidwell, Potwell, and possibly other forms, this is probably an English locational surname. If so it originates either from the Somerset village of Pedwell recorded in the 1086 Domesday Book as "Pedewella", and translating as "Peda's spring" or possibly from a similarily named "lost" medieval place. An alternative proposal put forward by the famous Victorian etymologist Canon Bardsley, is that the name is a tranposed spelling of the surname and occupational name "Beadle", in that the letters "b" and "p" were interchangeable in post medieval English. Our research suggests that it is locational, but there is no doubt that with such a possible wide range of spellings, almost anything could be suggested, if not proved. The earliest recordings of the name are in London, a possible pointer to the "lost" village theory, as the name is not recorded in Somerset until the 18th century. Examples of the name recording include Ann Pedwell, christened at the church of St Mary Woolchurch, city of London, on November 11th 1625, Samuel Padwell, at Holcombe, Somerset, on November 12th 1705, Edward Pattle at St Katherines by the Tower (of London), on Julky 5th 1690, and Amos Pedwell at Octagon Chapel, Taunton, on February 20th 1822. The first known recording may be that of Thomas Pedle, at St Thomas church, Ludgate, London, on August 13th 1551. This was in the reign of King Edward V1, known as "The Boy King", 1547 - 1554.
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