The surname of ANTLE was of two-fold origin. It was a baptismal name 'the son of Arnketel' and it was also a locational name 'of Ampthill' a hamlet in the parish of Hursley, a market town seven miles from Bedford. The surname is now strongly represented in the United States. The name is also spelt ANTELL, ANTEL and ANTHEIL. Early records of the name mention Anketel le Mercer, 1273, London. Roger Anketyl was documented in County Somerset during the reign of Edward III (1327-1377). The small villages of Europe, or royal and noble households, even large religious dwellings and monasteries, gave rise to many family names, which reflected the occupation or profession of the original bearer of the name. Following the Crusades in Europe in the 11th 12th and 13th centuries a need was felt for an additional name. This was recognized by those of gentle birth, who realised that it added prestige and practical advantage to their status. At first the coat of arms was a practical matter which served a function on the battlefield and in tournaments. With his helmet covering his face, and armour encasing the knight from head to foot, the only means of identification for his followers, was the insignia painted on his shield, and embroidered on his surcoat, the draped and flowing garment worn over the armour. Later records of the name mention John More and Joan Antill who were married at St. Thomas the Apostle, London in 1567, and William Hames wed Fidocia Ampthill at Westminster, London in 1606. Mathias Lodge and Frances Anthill were married at the same church in 1670. Most of the European surnames were formed in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. The process had started somewhat earlier and had continued in some places into the 19th century, but the norm is that in the tenth and eleventh centuries people did not have surnames, whereas by the fifteenth century most of the population had acquired a second name. George ANTHEIL (1900-59) the American composer of Polish descent, born in New Jersey. He studied in Philadelphia, spending some years in Europe as a professional pianist before becoming known as the composer of the 'Jazz Symphony' (1925) and the opera 'Transatlantic' (1930).
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