This interesting name has nothing whatsoever to do with "cold cottages"! It is Olde English pre 7th century and derives either from the village of Chilcot near Burton on Trent or from the word "ceagel" meaning "a boundary post" plus Cott - a cottage. In other words "the dweller at the village boundary". Clearly "Chilcotts" were found in many parts of the country as the first recording comes from Somerset - with another spelling. John Chilcot of Tiverton (aged 14) was on, October 24th 1685, consigned as a prisoner to Barbadoes by Judge Jeffries for being a supporter of the fated Duke of Manmouth The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Gilbert de Childecote (as spelt) which was dated 1328, in the "Pipe Rolls of Somerset" during the reign of King Edward 111, known as "The Father of the Navy" 1327 - 1377 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.