This interesting name is Medieval English, but of pre 8th century Norse-Vking origins. It derives from the ancient personal name 'Thorgils'. According to various books on etymology, this was composed of the elements Thor, the ancient god of war, and found in the weekday word Thursday, plus gils, with the (modern?) meaning of hostage. Quite why somebody should be named "Thors hostage" is unclear, and it may be that one thousand and more years ago given the warlike tendancies of the Vikings, there was a more literal meaning of "Thor's follower". Recorded in the various spellings of Sturge, the patronymics Sturges, Sturgis, Sturgess, and even Turgoose, the personal name in the centuries before the adoption of surnames, was very popular with the Norman Invaders of England. This accounts for its "survival" after the 1066 Invasion, when many early names disappeared during a period of political correctness. Amongst the notable namebearers listed in the English National Biography is Joseph Sturge (1793 - 1859), a quaker and philanthropist, who went to the West Indies in order to assist in the freeing of the slaves in 1807. Amongst the recordings of the name in London is that of Peter Sturge who married Elizabeth Elder July 9th 1730 at St. Mary's church, Lewisham, whilst the first recording of the family name is believed to be that of Henry Sturgis. This was dated 1210, in the Pipe Rolls of the county of Worcestershire, during the reign of King John, 1199 - 1216. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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