Recorded as Pidgley, Pidgeley, Pidsley and Pidley, this is an English locational surname. It originates from either a now 'lost' medieval village which was possibly situated in the county of Devonshire, as the earliest recordings are to be found there, or from the existing village of Pidley in the county of Huntingdonshire. The latter is possible, as even in those days people did move surprisingly long distances to re-establish themselves. The name means the farm (leah) by the river or stream, from the Olde English pre 7th century word 'pidle' meaning a small river. Locational surnames are usually 'from' names. That is to say names given to people after they left their original homes, to move somewhere else. The easiest way to identfy such strangers, was usually to call them by the name of the place from whence they came. Spelling being at best erratic and local dialects very thick, soon lead to the development of 'sounds like' spellings. In this case the first known recording is believed to be that of Walter de Pideneslegh of Devon, in the Hundred Rolls of landowners in the year 1273, whilst many centuries later Martha Pidgley married Samuel Taunton at St Georges Chapel, Hanover Square, in the city of Westminster in the year 1761.
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