For the most part, Greek surnames are difficult for foreigners to pronounce and have a complicated word structure, unlike any other European surname.
Crusaders returning from the Holy Land, often called their children by biblical and religious names to commorate the fathers "pilgrimage", and this is one of the many names used.
The first recorded spelling of the family name anywhere in the world, is believed to be that of Roger Emaygne in the rolls of the assize court, Colchester, Essex, England, in the year This is the type of information that is usually not found in written records, as it may pre-date them or they may have been lost or not recorded.
There are also surnames that are based on a profession, unique abilities, animals, places of origin, and nicknames. This is the name that is on their birth certificates.
Origin of peoples last names
You may find matronymics, in which a person has a surname based on the name of their mother though this is incredibly uncommon. In fact, modern Greece does not allow a woman to completely drop her maiden name, even upon marriage. Crusaders returning from the Holy Land, often called their children by biblical and religious names to commorate the fathers "pilgrimage", and this is one of the many names used. However, their similarity to any other European surnames ends there. Other than patronymic surnames, where the origin is a clear one, there are other types of surnames in Greek history and modern Greece. As an example, ancient Greeks did not have official surnames like we do today. While these rules are not always true, they are common. However, a careful study of your Greek surname will reveal the origins of your Greek family in a way the records never will. You might even find that your Greek ancestry goes beyond Greece by the surname your Greek ancestors adopted. In Europe the name was first associated wiuth a 3rd century martyr, and achieved some popularity, although it was generally quite rare until the 12th century, and the famous crusades of the period. The first name has long been associated with the puritan or dissenter protestants, and was still being used as a personal name in Cornwall up into the 19th Century. It derives from the ancient Hebrew given name "Imanuel", which means "God is with us".
Not only that, but each historical period in Greece had its own method of surname creation, assuming it was a time period when surnames were even being used. As an example, ancient Greeks did not have official surnames like we do today.
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