The Hungate family originated in the City of York, England. In some old maps it is written Hundgate. During the Danish Conquest and occupation of NorthumberIand, the City of York was their capital. All the streets are called gates. There is one short and narrow street called Hungate. It goes down to the river Foss from St. Saviours Gate and it is near the site of an ancient dock where it is thought the Royal Kennel was located and that the dogs were used in hunting in the forest of Galpes, then adjoining the City.

The Danish word for dog is hund. Hence, the narrow street leading down to the river was called Hund Gate, corrupted to Hungate. Afterwards, this street became a commercial center and merchants lived near it. The family of Hungate, doubtless, took its name from this street.

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