There are two possible origins for this slightly transposed spelling. The first is as a medieval job description for a fisherman, one who used a particular form of wicker basket known as a "Wyle" for trapping the fish. The interchangeable "W" and "V" is usually associated with the West County accent and is quite common. The second possible origin relates to a derivative of the French nickname surname "Vitalis" meaning "the lively one" and usually found as Vial, Vialls, Viel etc, and as first recorded as Juliana Viel, in Essex, 1273 AD. In both these names, the plural is associated with "son of ". The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William de la Wile. which was dated 1185, The Pipe Rolls of Dorset. during the reign of King Henry II, The Builder 1154 - 1189. 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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