This is an English locational surname. Recorded in a wide variety of spellings including Pickering, Pickerin, and the dialectals Pickring, Pickrin, Puckering, Puckrin, and Puckring, it originates from the little town of Pickering in the North Riding of Yorkshire. This place was 'cleared' under the early Enclosure Acts, by which people having rights of grazing on common lands were dispossessed, and forced to look elsewhere for their livelihood. The town name derives from the Olde English pre 7th century "Picoringas", meaning meaning the sharp point (pic) of a hill, with "ora", edge, and the suffix "-ing" This translates as 'The people living on the ridge of the pointed hill", a fair description of Pickering. The placename was recorded as "Picheringa" in the Domesday Book of 1086, and as "Pikering" in the Close Rolls of Yorkshire. The surname dates back to the mid 12th Century (see below), and other early recordings include: Henry de Pikeringes (1246), in the Feet of Fines of Oxfordshire, and John Pykeryng (1327), recorded in the Subsidy Rolls of Somerset. Recordings from English Church Registers include: the christening of Anne, daughter of William Pikering, on March 4th 1551, in Aberford, Yorkshire, and the marriage of Richard Pickering and Anne Swynerton on February 10th 1562, at St. Andrew by the Wardrobe, London. A Coat of Arms granted to a Pickering family is silver and red chequy, a black bend. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Reginald de Pichering, which was dated 1165, in the "Pipe Rolls of Yorkshire", during the reign of King Henry 11, known as "The Builder of Churches", 1154 - 1189. 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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