This most interesting and unusual surname is a dialectal variant of "Walpole", an English habitational name from either of two places in Suffolk and Norfolk. The place in Suffolk which was recorded as "Walepola" in the Domesday Book of 1086, while the other place in Norfolk was recorded "Walepol", circa 1050 in the Codex Diplomaticus aevi Saxonici". The place in Suffolk means "pool of the Welsh", from the old English elements "wealh", foreigner, Briton and "pol", pool, while the latter derives from the old English "W(e)all", wall, plus "pol" as above. The modern surname is found in several spellings including Waple(s), Wapple(s) and Wapol.The surname first appears in records in the late 12th Century (see below). One William Wagepol(e) appeared in the Curia Rolls of Suffolk in 1206 while Thomas Waghepol was recorded in 1219 in the Assize Court Rolls of the borough of Leicestershire in 1271. On June 27th 1557 Hillary Wapolle married Joane Garret at St. Peter, Cornhill, London, whilst Joanna Waple married Joannes Fletcher on June 4th 1592 at St. Martin-in-the-Fields, Westminster. Joanna Waples, daughter of Thomas and Grace Waples was christened at St. Dunstan, Stepney, London on August 6th 1636. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Everard Wagepol(e), which was dated 1169, The Pipe Rolls of Wiltshire, during the reign of King Henry 11, known as "The Builder of Churches", 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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