This surname SLAGG was a locational name 'the dweller at the slack' a place where the road became less sleep, a gap in the hills. Habitation names are derived from names denoting towns, villages, farmsteads or other named places, which include rivers, houses with signs on them, regions, or whole counties. The original bearer of the name who stayed in his area might be known by the name of his farm, or the locality in the parish; someone who moved to another town might be known by the name of his village; while someone who moved to another county could acquire the name of that county or the region from which he originated. The name is also spelt SLAKE, SLACK, SLACKE, SLACKE, SLAG and SLAGGE. Early records of the name mention Gerebod le Slac, 1195, London. Johannes de Slake of Yorkshire, was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. Thomas Slack and Elizabeth Slegge were married at St. James's, Clerkenwell, London in the year 1579. Buried. John Slake (rogue) at St. Peter, Cornhill, London in the year 1578. Before the 1066 Conquest names were rare in England, the few examples found were mainly adopted by those of the clergy or one who had taken holy orders. In 1086 the conquering Duke William of Normandy commanded the Domesday Book. He wanted to know what he had and who held it, and the Book describes Old English society under its new management in minute detail. It was then that surnames began to be taken for the purposes of tax-assessment. The nobles and the upper classes were first to realise the prestige of a second name, but it was not until the 15th century that most people had acquired a second name. The name was taken early to Scotland by settlers, and Slake or Slack in the parish of Roberton, Roxburghshire, is where some of the original bearers of the name may have come. Edward del Slake who was recorded in Roxburgh in the year 1389, appears to be the first of the name on record in Scotland and Thomas Slak appears in Glasgow in the year 1400. The associated coat of arms is recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory. Ulster King of Arms in 1884.
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