This surname is medieval Cornish, and is recorded in the spellings of Tregaskes, Tregaskis and Tregaskiss. It is said to be mainly found in Mid Cornwall, and describes a person who lived at a now lost homestead called Tre-goskes. This means a home in a sheltered place, with goskes describing a small valley or depression. There is also a possibility that it may be a variant spelling of Trevaskis, from either Trevaskis, a hamlet in the parish of Gwinear, or Trevascus in the parish of Goran. Both places had the original spelling of Trevalscoys, meaning the place of Maelscuet, the latter being an ancient Celtic name of uncertain meaning. The surname development in Cornwall has included the following variant spellings Tregiskie in 1590; Tregaskeys in 1609; and Tregascus (1644). Amongst the recordings of the surname in surviving Cornish church registers of three centuries ago are the marriage of John Tregaskis and Margery Hendra, at the village of Kenwyn, on December 5th 1665, and the christening of George Tregaskiss, on July 9th 1732, at village of St. Clement. The first recorded spelling of the family name may be that of John Tregaskes. This was dated July 28th 1566, when he was a witness at the christening of his son Clemence, at St. Clement's, Cornwall, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1st of England and known to history as Good Queen Bess, 1558 - 1603. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes known as the 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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