Recorded inthe spellings of Took, Toole, Toke, Tuke, and Tuckson, this very early surname is of Olde English and Norse-Viking pre 7th century origins. It is believed to derive from the Scandanavian given name of "Toki", of uncertain origin, but possibly relating to and a short form of, the name "Thirkill". If so the derivation is from "Thor", the ancient god of Thunder, and found in the day of the week Thursday, and "kettil" which in this case is not an instrument for brewing tea, but a huge cauldron of fire! The surname is famous in history for its association with the swordsman cleric Friar Tuck, a major figure in the medieval annals of the famed Robin Hood, Robin of Sherwood, or Robin of Lockesley, who is believed to have lived somewhere between the years 1170 and 1400, if he lived at all. Early examples of the surname recording taken from surviving rolls, registers and charters of the 12th century onwards include: Thomas Tuke of Yorkshire, in the Poll Tax register of 1379, Johannes Tokson in the same Poll Tax rolls of Yorkshire and in the same year, John Tuke who married Margaret Williams in London in 1571, and Thomas Tooke, who married Elizabeth Atkins at Hertford in 1676. The first recorded spelling of the family name is believed to be that of Besi Tuk. This was dated 1051, in the famed Anglo-Saxon Chronicals, during the reign of King Edward, The Confessor, 1042 - 1066. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes 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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