This interesting name is of topographic origin from the Old pre 7th Century English "lacu" applied to someone living by a stream. The name is presumed to relate particularly to Devon and the English west county. Variants of the surname include Lakes and Lakeman. It has emerged as early as the beginning of the 13th Century (see below). One Robert Altelake is recorded in the Pipe Rolls of Surrey (1242). In the London church registers Elizabeth, daughter of William Lacke was noted as christened at "St. Katherine's by the Tower" on July 28th 1594. Ann Lack is recorded as marrying Steven Tomlinson at St. Olave's, Hart Street, London on August 16th 1629. Another marriage was that of Francis Lack and Mary Greene registered at St. Jame's, Duke's Place, London on March 5th 1667. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard de la Lake, which was dated 1200, The Pipe Rolls of Shropshire, during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. 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.