Recorded as Spreull, Sproul, Sprouls, Sproule, Sproules, Sprulls, Sprowles and others this is a Scottish surname. Originally recorded in Dumbartonshire in the late 13th Century, it is believed to derive from the Old Gaelic word "Spruille" meaning literally a fragment or morsel, and used in an endearment sense to describe someone of small slight stature. Walter Spreul, (see below), obtained a charter of the lands of Dalguhen for homage and service paid to Robert, the Bruce, whilst earlier in 1296 Wautier Spreul of Lanarkshire rendered homage to John Balliol. His seal bears a hunting-horn, stringed, between three roses. Other early recordings include Walter Sproull who paid to the Exchequer the contribution of the barony of Glasgow in 1336 and Thomas Sprowl, receiver of stores of Edinburgh Castle in 1368. On January 17th 1725 Esther, daughter of John Spreulls and Ester Welsh, was christened in Inveresk with Musselburgh, Midlothian. John Sprull and Anne Willis were married in St. Martin in the Fields, Westminster, London on September 5th 1729, and on February 2nd 1738 the marriage of Edward Sprules to Jane Davis took place in St. Lawrence, Pountney, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Walter Spreul, steward of Malcolm, earl of Levenax, which was dated 1218 in the Charter Records of the land of Dalmuir", during the reign of King Alexander 11 of Scotland, 1214 - 1249. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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