This is a very English name, coming from a diminutive of various male personal names beginning with "Al", particularly Alan, Albert, Alban and Alexander, with the popular medieval suffix "cock", from the Olde English pre 7th Century "cocc", Middle English (1200 - 1500) "cok", used here as a nickname from the bird. The application of the nickname could be for various reasons, it was most often used for a young lad who strutted around in a pert and aggressive manner, and as such soon became a generic name for young men, and was added to the short forms of many medieval names, such as Allcock, Hancock and Hiscock. The nickname may also have applied to an early riser or to a natural leader. The name can be spelt Allcock or Alcock. Recordings from London Church Registers include the marriage of John Alcock and Agnes White on October 4th 1545, at St. Mary Magdalene's, Old Fish Street, and the christening of Dorothie, daughter of Thomas Alcock, on June 16th 1550, at St. Mary the Virgin, Aldermanbury. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Alexander Alecoc, which was dated 1275, in the "Subsidy Rolls of Worcestershire", during the reign of King Edward 1, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. 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.