This is both a rare surname and one of which the origin is at best uncertain. It seems to be English and specifically associated with the county of Hampshire although found in some other counties in very small numbers. We thought at first that it may be related to the Scottish surname Traill, but if so we have not been able to establish any proven links. Given its rarity it is possible that it is an unusual medieval nickname perhaps for a singer, one who could trill, but this seems unlikely because it would seem that the word was not used in England until the 17th century. A more likely origin is from the Scandanavian -Viking word "trilla" meaning a small stream. It is known that the Vikings controlled a number of estuaries around the Hampshire - Solent area in the 8th century, so it is possible that the name originates from that period. As well as Hampshire, the surname is quite well recorded in the church registers of Carisbrooke in the Isle of Wight during the Stuart period. Recordings include Richard Trill or Trell who married Jone Pratt at Carisbrooke on October 28th 1633, and Elizabeth Trill who married John Parre at St Thomas' Portsmough on January 26th 1656, during the "reign" of Oliver Cromwell (1650 - 1658).
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