This interesting and uncommon name is of early medieval English origin, and is one of the patronymic surnames formed from the name Hick, itself from the medieval given name "Hicke", a pet form of the male personal name Richard. This name was occasionally found in Olde English, but was popularized in England by the Normans after the Conquest of 1066 in the forms "Ricard" and "Richard". It is of Old Germanic origin, and composed of the elements "ric", power, with "hard", hardy, brave, strong. The ersonal name quickly became a favourite, and many diminutive and patronymic surnames were formed, such as Dick(s), Rick(s), and Hick(s). The substitution of "H" as the initial resulted from the inability of the English to pronounce the Norman "R". Early recordings of the personal name include "Hikke", in 1276, and "Hyk", 1286, both in Yorkshire, and one Richard Hick is recorded in the Yorkshire Subsidy Rolls of 1302. The modern patronymic surname forms from Hick include Hicks, Hickes, Hix and Heeks, and some early examples from Church Registers are the christening of Margaret, daughter of Edward Heekes, on February 20th 1574, at St. Swithin's, Worcestershire, and the christening of John Heeks at Harrow on the Hill, London, on August 28th 1578. The Coat of Arms most associated with the name depicts two gold palets between nine gold fleurs-de-lis on a blue shield. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Hickys, which was dated 1332, in the "Subsidy Rolls of Warwickshire", 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.