Recorded as Stoile, Stoyle, Stoyles, Stoyell, and possibly others, this is an English surname, but one of French origins. It is relatively widespread through England, but rarely found in large numbers. The derivation is from the pre 9th century Old French word "estoile", meaning a star. This possibly denoted a person with a streck of white hair, or more likely someone who lived at a house which had the sign of a star as its distinguishing symbol before the days of house numbers. For some nameholders it may have been occupational for an astrologer, as this was a popular science in medieval times. The word 'estoile' was introduced into England after the Norman Conquest of 1066, and first appears as a surname in charters and rolls of the 13th century. An early example of the name recordings was that of Eliot Stoyle in the rolls known as the Curia Regis for the county of Kent in 1210. Later examples taken from surviving church registers include John Stoile who was christened at St. Botolph's church, Lincoln on July 25th 1569, whilst at Linton in Craven, Yorkshire, Rosamond Stoiles was christened on November 13th 1615. Other examples are Thomas Stoyell, who married Emma Morecome at Bideford in Devon on March 26th 1656, and Ann Stoyles who married James Grounsell at Alverstoke, Hampshire, on December 25th 1812. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Stoile. This was dated 1194, in the Pipe Rolls of Derbyshire, during the reign of King Richard 1st of England, known as "The Lionheart", 1189 - 1199. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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