The surname of DELLBRIDGE was a locational name 'the dweller at the bridge' from residence nearby or an occupational name for a bridge keeper. Local names usually denoted where a man held land. A name brought to England with the Conqueror with the Conquest of 1066. Local surnames, by far the largest group, derived from a place name where the man held land or from the place from which he had come, or where he actually lived. These local surnames were originally preceded by a preposition such as "de", "atte", "by" or "in". The names may derive from a manor held, from working in a religious dwelling or from literally living by a wood or marsh or by a stream. Following the Crusades in Europe a need was felt for a family name. This was recognized by those of noble blood, who realised the prestige and practical advantage it would add to their status. Early records of the name mention Walter le Briggere, 1327 County Sussex. Giles Brugge of County Somerset, during the reign of Henry VIII (1509-1547). Samuel Calderwood and Miss Anne Bridges were married at St. George's, Hanover Square, London in 1736.
Building and maintaining bridges was one of the three main feudal obligations, along with bearing arms and maintaining all the fortifications. The cost of building a bridge was often defrayed by charging a toll, the surname thus being acquired by the toll gatherer. The form Bridge, was most common in Lancashire. During the Middle Ages, when people were unable to read or write, signs were needed for all visual identification. For several centuries city streets in Britain were filled with signs of all kinds, public houses, tradesmen and even private householders found them necessary. This was an age when there were no numbered houses, and an address was a descriptive phrase that made use of a convenient landmark. At this time, coats of arms came into being, for the practical reason that men went into battle heavily armed and were difficult to recognise. It became the custom for them to adorn their helmets with distinctive crests, and to paint their shields with animals and the like. Coats of arms accompanied the development of surnames, becoming hereditary in the same way.
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