Recorded as de Roche, Deroche, Le Roche, Roach, Roache, Roches, Roches and possibly others, this is a surname of French origins well recorded in both England and Ireland. It is residential, and described somebody who lived by a rocky crag or who came from "Les Roches," a place in Normandy. From this origin it became widespread in England after the Norman invasion of England in 1066, spread to Ireland after 1170 where it became widespread in the province. The place name Rochestown occurs in the counties of Wexford, Cork and Kilkenny, and the family were particularly powerful family in Fermoy, County Cork, where a large tract of land is still known as "Roches county". Early recordings of the name in England include Lucas de Roches of Hampshire in 1249, and Ralph de la Roche in the Pipe Rolls of Cornwall in 1195. William Roache is recorded as a small landowner in the new world of Barbados, in the West Indies, circa 1678 - 1680. Father Philip Roche of Wexford died for his prominent part in the 1798 Rebellion in Ireland, as did one Edward Roche. Sir Boyle Roche (1743 - 1807) was famous for his wit and "bulls". The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John de Roches. This was dated 1086, in the Domesday Book of Bedfordshire, during the reign of King William, known as "The Conqueror", 1066 - 1087. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes 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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