Recorded in several forms including Choale, Choales, Schole, Scholes, School, Schoole, Schools and Skoole, this is an English surname. It is residential or locational, and derives from the pre 7th century Olde Norse word 'skali' meaning a hut or temporary shelter. The name may therefore be topographic for someone who lived at one of these temporary structures, particularly shepherds looking after summer grazing flocks, or it may be locational from such places as Scales in Cumberland, Scole in Norfolk, or more likely the several places called Scholes in the West Riding of Yorkshire. This is born our by the fact that the early recordings of the surname are confined to Northern England. Examples include Adam de Scoles in the Assize Court Rolls of Lancashire in 1285, Thomas del Scales in the Subsidy Rolls of Cumberland, dated 1332, and John del Scholes in the Poll Tax Returns of Yorkshire in 1379. Other recordings taken from surviving registers of the city of London and showing the name development as it moved south, include Anne Skoole at Christ Church Greyfriars, on December 16th 1587, and Frances School at St Dunstans in the East, Stepney, on January 15th 1605. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard del Scoles. This was dated 1275, in the Court Rolls of the Manor of Wakefield, Yorkshire, during the reign of King Edward 1st, 1272 - 1307. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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