The surname of NALL was derived from the Old English word NEALL - an occupational name, the dweller and worker at the hall. In Latin documents the name is De Aula. 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.Early records of the name mention Robert de la Nall, 1199, Hampshire. Walter de la Nalle 1279 Shropshire. William atte Nall of Yorkshire was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. Baptised. William, son of William Nall at St. Dionis Backchurch, London in the year 1665.
William Nall and Jane Biber were married at Canterbury, Kent in the year 1681. The name has many variant spellings which include Nail, Nale and Nalle. Surnames as we know them today were first assumed in Europe from the 11th to the 15th Century. The employment in the use of a second name was a custom that was first introduced from the Normans. They themselves had not long before adopted them. It became, in course of time, a mark of gentler blood, and it was deemed a disgrace for gentlemen to have but one single name, as the meaner sort had. 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 flowing and draped garment worn over the armour.
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