This interesting and ancient surname recorded in several spellings include Temple, Tempel, Tempell and Temprell, is indisputably associated with the famous crusaders of the 12th century known as the Knight Templars, although it has other possible origins. For most nameholders it is of early medieval English and French origin, and as such either an occupational for a horse soldier who was employed as a Templar, or who worked at the knights headquarters known as the Temple. The Knight Templars also known as the knights of St John, were a crusading order named because they claimed the right to occupy the site in Jerusalem of the original Christian temple. The order was founded in 1118, and flourished for two hundred years, but was suppressed as being heretical in 1312. The surname may also be of Scottish locational origin, from the parish of Temple in Edinburgh, likewise so called because it was the site of the local headquarters of the Knights Templar. Early recordings taken from authentic registers include William Temple, listed in the Calendar of Pleas for the City of London in 1380, whilst Agnes de Temple held lands in Haddington, Scotland, in 1429. One of the earliest settlers in New England was Thomas Temple Esq, who was appointed governor for life of Laccady, and other territories in America, in 1616. Richard Tempell was a christening witness at St Giles Cripplegate, in the city of London, in 1652, whilst Elisabeth Temprell married Richard Brooks at St James Paddington, on March 30th 1821. The first recorded spelling of the family name was that of Hugo del Temple. This was dated 1131, in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicles for the county of Essex, during the reign of King Henry 1st of England, known as "The Lion of Justice", 1100 - 1135.
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