This surname of CRICK is a habitation name from a place so called in Derbyshire, which apparently gets its name from a British element of CRUC (a hill) and LEAH (wood-clearing) literally meaning the dweller at the wood clearing. 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. The pronunciation is usually Kraitley. Most of the European surnames in countries such as England, Scotland and France 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. Early records of the name mention Richard Critchlow of Leyland, who was listed in the Wills at Chester in 1545, and John Crichlowe of Croxton was documented in the same Wills in 1593. Edmund Crichlow was recorded in the Preston Guild Rolls in 1662, and Edmund Crichlow appears in the same Wills in 1682. Joseph Critchley and Elizabeth Parker were married at St. George's, Hanover Square, London in 1804. Since the dawn of civilisation the need to communicate has been a prime drive of all higher mankind. The more organised the social structure became, the more urgent the need to name places, objects and situations essential to the survival and existence of the social unit. From this common stem arose the requirements to identify families, tribes and individual members evolving into a pattern in evidence today. In the formation of this history, common usage of customs, trades, locations, patronymic and generic terms were often adopted as surnames. The demands of bureaucracy formally introduced by feudal lords in the 11th century, to define the boundaries and families within their fiefdoms, crystallized the need for personal identification and accountability, and surnames became in general use from this time onwards.
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