One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A legal deed made and executed by one party only, especially to formalize a change of a person's name.‘he changed his name by deed poll’
- ‘For a reasonable fee, a solicitor will arrange a simple name change by deed poll.’
- ‘Paul's answer is to change his first name via deed poll for the princely sum of just a tad under thirty quid.’
- ‘As we mentioned above, it was at this time that he changed his name by deed poll from Neumann to Newman.’
- ‘Inebriated, both of them decided to change their names by deed poll for a bet.’
- ‘Literally, if a new series doesn't inspire at least 50 people to change their name by deed poll to that of one of the show's characters, it's deemed an irrevocable failure.’
Late 16th century: so named because the parchment was ‘polled’ or cut cleanly, not indented at the edges as in the case of a deed made by two parties.
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