This interesting and unusual name derives from two possible sources. Firstly it may be from the Old English pre-seventh Century word "pucel", a little goblin, elf, sprite, thus being used as a nickname for a person bearing a physical resemblance to the above. The surname from this source first appears in records at the beginning of the 13th Century, (see below). Nicholas Pokel was recorded in the Hundred Rolls of kent in 1275, while the Ministers account of the Earldom of Cornwall, lists a John le Pochel in 1297.The surname may also be topographical, from the Old English words "puca", a goblin, a being from the supernatural word who played a shadowy part in the minor draws of ordinary peoples lives associated with many fields and topographical features in Sussex, plus "holh", Old English name for a hallow, hence "dweller by the Goblin's hallow". The surname from this source, first appears in 1296, in the Subsidy Rolls of Sussex when a Robert de Pukehole was recorded. Two Pucknoll was christened on December 28th 1569, at Petworth Sussex, while John, son of Roger Pocknoll was christened on August 19th 1573, at Petworth. Edward Pucknell married Elizabeth Bushope on July 12th 1584, at South Berstead, Sussex. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard Puchel, which was dated 1200, in the Pipe Rolls of Bedfordshire, during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. 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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