Recorded in many spellings including Streatley, Streetley, Streetly, Stratley, Stratly, Strutly, and others, this is a surname of pre 7th century Olde English origins. It is locational either from the town of Streatley in the county of Bedfordshire or from any or all of the various Streetley villages in Cambridgeshire, Warwickshire, and Essex, although the latter is now apparently known as Littlebury. All the places have the same meaning of 'a place on a Roman Road', and all are first recorded at much the same time which was in the year 1050 in the reign of Edward, the Confessor, the last true Anglo-Saxon king. As to when the surname was first recorded is unclear, although one Osbert de Strete appears in the Olde English by names listing for the years 1100 - 1130 and William de la Stret is recorded in Devonshire in 1228. Locational surnames are usually 'from' names. Taht is to say names given to people after they left their original homes and moved somewhere else. Spelling over the centuries being at best erratic and local dialects very thick, often lead as with this name, to the development of 'sounds like' spellings. Good examples of how spellings developed include the recordings from surviving early church registers of the city of London of Elizabeth Straetly who married Jarvis Goffe at St Giles Cripplegate on June 5th 1608, another Elizabeth, this time Streatley, who married William Wayland at the same church on October 30th 1627 and Elias Stretley, who was christened at the same church on December 4th 1642.
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