Recorded in several spellings as shown below, this is an English surname. It is unusual, and is believed to be a medieval nickname surname which ultimately derived from the Olde English pre 10th century word "pykerell", meaning a young pike fish. This fish was considered a great delicacy on the food tables of ancient times, and therefore the original "name" was probably given either to a fisherman who specialized in breeding or catching pike, or given the fierce and ferocious attitudes associated with the fish, may have described either a person of similar attitudes, or even someone who had prominent teeth! The difficulty with all medieval nicknames is that without being actually present when a name was bestowed, the precise meaning is almost always lost in the mists of time. In the modern idiom the spelling forms include Pickerell, Pickerill, Pickrell, and Pickrill. Examples of early recordings take from surviving church registers of the diocese of Greater London include Elizabeth Pickerill, the daughter of Francis and Ellen Pickerill, christened at St. Botolph's Bishopsgate, in 1670, whilst Basil Pickrell married Mary Hawkins at St. Nicholas church, Cole Abbey, in 1719. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Yuo Pikerell. This was dated 1199, in the Pipe Rolls of the county of Norfolk, during the reign of King John of England, 1199 - 1216. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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