This surname of STICKLEY was a locational name meaning 'the dweller at the STICKLEY' from residence by some meadow of a sticky soil. Surnames derived from placenames are divided into two broad categories; topographic names and habitation names. Topographic names are derived from general descriptive references to someone who lived near a physical feature such as an oak tree, a hill, a stream or a church. Habitation names are derived from pre-existing names denoting towns, villages and farmsteads. Other classes of local names include those derived from the names of rivers, individual houses with signs on them, regions and whole countries. The earliest of the name on record appears to be William atte STICKLEGH, who was recorded in County Somerset during the reign of Edward III (1327-1377), and Simon STICCLE was recorded in 1377. It was not until the 10th century that modern hereditary surnames first developed, and the use of fixed names spread, first to France, and then England, then to Germany and all of Europe. In these parts of Europe, the individual man was becoming more important, commerce was increasing and the exact identification of each man was becoming a necessity. Even today however, the Church does not recognise surnames. Baptisms and marriages are performed through use of the Christian name alone. Thus hereditary names as we know them today developed gradually during the 11th to the 15th century in the various European countries. Later instances of the name include John STICKLEY and Rose Powell, who were married at St. Mary Aldermary, London in the year 1606, and William STICKLY and Sarah Bonus wed at St. George's Chapel, Mayfair, London in 1752. A notable member of the name was Gustav STICKLEY (1857-1942) the American designer and metalworker, born in Pennsylvania. He began his career as a stonemason. In 1898 he made a journey through Europe, and on his return to the USA formed the Gustav STICKLEY company in New York, producing solid furniture, with a hint of Art Nouveau, which he first exhibited at Grand Rapids in 1900. In the Middle Ages heraldry came into use as a practical matter. It originated in the devices used to distinguish the armoured warriors in tournament and war, and was also placed on seals as marks of identity. As far as records show, true heraldry began in the middle of the 12th century, and appeared almost simultaneously in several countries of Western Europe.
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