This unusual name is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a locational surname deriving in most instances from the place called Tapeley in Devonshire, although some examples of the surname may have originated from Taplow in Buckinghamshire. Tapeley in Devonshire is recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086 as "Tapeleia", and n the 1178 Pipe Rolls of the county as "Tappeleg"; the placename is derived from the Olde English pre 7th Century "taeppa", tap, believed to be here used in an earlier sense of "peg", with "leah", copse, grove, thin wood, hence "wood where pegs were got". The place in Buckinghamshire is recorded as "Thapeslav" in the Domesday Book, and as "Tappelawe" in the 1196 Pipe Rolls, and derives its name from the Olde English personal name "Taeppa", from the vocabulary "taeppa", as before, used originally as a nickname for a "long, thin" man, with "hlaw", low hill, mound. The place was named from a barrow in the old churchyard. Recordings of the surname from Devonshire Church Registers include: the christening of Johannes Tapplie at Bovey Tracey, in 1539; the marriage of Margeria Tapply and Richard Soper on October 19th 1577, also at Bovey Tracey; and the marriage of Henry Tapply and Mary Milman at Cornwood, in January 1699. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Adam de Tapplegh, which was dated 1272, in the "Book of Fees of Devonshire", during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. 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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