This distinguished name with spellings which include: Wardrobe, Wardrope, Wardroper, Wardrupp, Wardrop, and Whatrup, is Anglo-Scottish. It was formerly a status or locational surname for a keeper of a royal or noble wardrobe, or a person who lived near the Wardrobe, a street in the ancient city of London. The component elements are the Old French "warder" or "garder", meaning to watch, plus "robe", a garment; hence, "garderobe", and "warderobe". It is interesting to note that the wardrope was a repository not only for articles of dress, but also for items of furniture, and for foreign spices and confections. The surname is first recorded in Scotland in the early 13th Century, (see below). and other early recordings include Joscelin de la Warderob(e), in the Curia Regis Rolls of Berkshire, in the year 1219, and Thomas de Garderoba, in the Curia Rolls of the Manor of Wakefield, Yorkshire, in 1286. On September 17th 1676, Winifred Wardrobe, was christened at St. Andrew by the Wardrobe, London, and on December 30th 1759 Robert Wardrope and Elizabeth Barton were married at St. Dunstan's church, Stepney, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robertus de Warderob, who witnesses a charter by Margaret, countess of Buchan, which was dated circa 1210, Register of the Abbey of Arbroath, during the reign of King William, "The Lion of Scotland", 1165 - 1214. 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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