Recorded as Chapel, Chappell, Chapple, Capewell (English), Capelle, Chappelle, de la Chappelle, Chappel (French), Supple (Irish), and possibly others, this is a surname of medieval French origins. In troduced into England after the famous Conquest by the Norman-French in 1066, it is locational from any of the various places called Chapel or Chappelle or topographical for someone who lived close to a chapel. The ultimate origination is the Roman (Latin) "capella", meaning a hood or cloak, but later transferred to the sense of a chapel or sanctuary. Topographical surnames were among the earliest created, since both natural and man-made features in the landscape provided easily recognisable distinguishing names. The Irish spelling of Supple is believed to date back to the 12th centuary when nameholders then called 'Chappelle' of which Supple is the fused form, were followers of Strongbow, earl of Pembroke who conquered most of Ireland in 1170. Amongst the recordings is the christening of Abraham Chapple, on August 7th 1623 at St. Botolph's, Bishopsgate in the city of London, whilst in Ireland George Supple, was exiled from Ireland in 1848, and later three times condemned to death, although the sentence was commutated. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Chapel, which was dated 1202, in the "Pipe Rolls of Norfolk", during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. 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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