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According to a recent Wikipedia article on the Surname Wood: “The most common explanation of the origin of the surname Wood is that it was used to describe a person who lived in or worked in a wood or forest. This name derived from Middle English "wode" from the Old English "wudu", both of which mean "wood."
It is also thought that it may be an ancient Scottish surname, originally known as 'de Bosco', because the family bore trees in their coat of arms. The ancient motto of this family is "Defend."
Wood can be traced as far back as the 11th century. Walter de la Wode is recorded in Hertfordshire in 1242. John Atewode is in the Rotuli Hundredorum in Essex in 1274, and William Bythewode is listed in the Subsidy Rolls in Sessex in 1296.
Some bearers of the surname Wood may descend from Irish immigrants who moved to England and Wales. Settlers with the surnames Coll, Coill or O'Coill (Ó Coill) or the anglicised form Quill were known to have changed their surnames to the English translation - Wood.
In England,Wales and the Isle of Man it is the 26th most-common surname, in Scotland it is the 53rd most-common surname and in the United States the 78th "