This name derives from the Medieval English "Stark" itself coming from the Olde English pre 7th Century "stearc" meaning "firm and unyielding". The name was originally given as a nickname to a strong determined person and is first recorded in the early half of the 13th Century, (see below). One, William Stark appears in the 1314, Fine Court Rolls of Essex as a witness. The surname is well recorded in Scotland from the late 14th Century onwards. In "Ancient Charters of the earldom of Morten" the leasing of Estirbalbretane lands to Richard Starke is recorded (1376).William Stark, tenant in Castalstaris, appears in the "Rental Book of Glasgow diocese" (1540). The name, with its variant forms Starkie and Starkey, is in Ireland since the 14th Century. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Rannulf Stark. which was dated 1222, in the Pipe Rolls of Suffolk. during the reign of King Henry 111, known as the Frenchman 1216 - 1272. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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