This English habitation name POUCK was probably from Puckney Gill in the parish of Charlwood, County Surrey, so called from the Old English word PUCA (goblin) and EG (island). The surname is first found in Sussex in 1332 as atte Pukenegh, and occurs also in County Surrey at about the same date. From the fourteenth to the seventeenth century the name was largely confined to a small central area of central Sussex, around West Grinstead. The name was also occasionally used as a nickname 'the PUK' from the complexion of hair or dress, a colour between russet and black. William Puch was documented in the year 1166, and appears to be the first of the name on record. William le Puk of County Somerset, was documented during the reign of Edward III (1327-1377) and John Pouk was recorded in County Somerset at the same time. Many factors contributed to the establishment of a surname system. For generations after the Norman Conquest of 1066 a very few dynasts and magnates passed on hereditary surnames, but the main of the population, with a wide choice of first-names out of Celtic, Old English, Norman and Latin, avoided ambiguity without the need for a second name. As society became more stabilized, there was property to leave in wills, the towns and villages grew and the labels that had served to distinguish a handful of folk in a friendly village were not adequate for a teeming slum where perhaps most of the householders were engaged in the same monotonous trade, so not even their occupations could distinguish them, and some first names were gaining a tiresome popularity, especially Thomas after 1170. The hereditary principle in surnames gained currency first in the South, and the poorer folk were slower to apply it. By the 14th century however, most of the population had acquired a second name.
The name is of Dutch parentage, and was brought into England in the wake of the Norman Invasion of 1066. Later records of the name mention Samuel Pooke (weaver) who is recorded in the church records of St. Peter, Cornhill, London in 1667. James Albon and Ann Pook were married at St. George's, Hanover Square, London in 1787. The associated coat of arms is recorded in Rietstaps Armorial General. Registered in Holland.
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