This very rare and unusual name has nothing whatever to do with 'snow', it is in fact Anglo-Saxon locational and derives from the parish of Kneesal, near Ollerton in Nottingham - locally pronounced as Snazle, itself a surname! Early recordings are few and these are found in London, suggesting a wholesale evacuation from the village in medieval times, and a consequent corruption of what was already a difficult spelling. The meaning of the name (pre 10th century) was probably 'the dweller at the place of nettles (Netele-Haella). The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Edward Snowsell which was dated 1580, who married Sisley Wilson - Aldermary, London during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, known as Good Queen Bess 1558 - 1603 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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