This name is of Scandinavian origin and is a foreshortening of the personal compound name "Thurkettle" itself a derivative of the Olde Norse personal name Arnkell, composed of the elements "arn" meaning "eagle" and "ketil" translating as "a helmet" or "a helmeted warrior". The word "ketil" is also taken to mean "cauldron" but the translation "helmet" is generally accepted. (The two are connected by shape). The surname is found chiefly in North England, where Scandinavian influence was strongest, and is most common in Northumberland. In the modern idiom there are at least four spelling variations including Cattell, Catell and Cattle. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Frieday Chetel - a freedman, Co. Norfolk. which was dated 1087, "History of Norfolk" - Blomefield and Parkin. during the reign of King William 11, known as "Rufus" 1087 - 1100. 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.