In Spain identifying patronymics are to be found as early as the mid-9th century, but these changed with each generation, and hereditary surnames seem to have come in slightly later in Spain than in England and France. As well as the names of the traditional major saints of the Christian Church, many of the most common Spanish surnames are derived from personal names of Germanic origin. For the most part these names are characteristically Hispanic. They derive from the language of the Visigoths, who controlled Spain between the mid-5th and early 8th centuries. The name is also spelt AVILLA. Notable members of this name include Luiz de AVILLA y ZUNIGA (l490-l550) the Spanish soldier and historian. He was a diplomat in the Service of Charles V and he wrote a history of Charles' German Wars l547. Juan de AVILA (l500-l569) the Spanish writer and preacher born in Almodovar del Campo. He wrote the "Apostle of Andalusia" beatified by Leo Xlll (l804). He has left numerous ascetic works and several volumes of spiritual letters. He was also a trusted counsellor of Saint Teresa. Surnames as we know them today were first assumed in Europe from the 11th to the 15th Century. The employment in the use of a second name was a custom that was first introduced from the Normans. They themselves had not long before adopted them. It became, in course of time, a mark of gentler blood, and it was deemed a disgrace for gentlemen to have but one single name, as the meaner sort had. At first the coat of arms was a practical matter which served a function on the battlefield and in tournaments. With his helmet covering his face, and armour encasing the knight from head to foot, the only means of identification for his followers, was the insignia painted on his shield and embroidered on his surcoat, the flowing and draped garment worn over the armour. Gil Gonzalez de AVILA (l577-l658) was the Spanish historian. He was the royal historiographer for Castile and is known for his accounts of the reign of Henri lll.
Orders over $85 qualify for Free Shipping within the U.S. (Use coupon code: FREESHIP).