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All you have to know about the last name DRINKWATER

Last name frequency

DRINKWATER : This last name is indexed 35,514 times on Geneanet!

Origin of last name

DRINKWATER : English: nickname from Middle English drink(en) ‘(to) drink’ + water ‘water’ possibly used of someone who claimed to prefer water to the sour ale he was offered by the ale wife or inn keeper. In the Middle Ages weak ale was the universal beverage among the poorer classes and so cheap as to be drunk like water whereas water itself was only doubtfully potable. A 13th-century writer describing the extreme poverty of the Franciscans when they first settled in London (1224) writes: ‘I have seen the brothers drink ale so sour that some would have preferred to drink water’. Compare French Boileau.

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