The surname CASSANO was a baptismal name 'the son of Cassandra' a common girl's name in the 12th and 13th century. The name was brought into England in the wake of the Norman Invasion of 1066. The names introduced into Britain by the Normans during and in the wake of the Invasion of 1066, are nearly all territorial in origin. The followers of William the Conqueror were a pretty mixed lot, and while some of them brought the names of their castles and villages in Normandy with them, many were adventurers of different nationalities attached to William's standard by the hope of plunder, and possessing no family or territorial names of their own. Those of them who acquired lands in England were called by their manors, while others took the name of the offices they held or the military titles given to them, and sometimes, a younger son of a Norman landowner, on receiving a grant of land in his new home dropped his paternal name and adopted that of his newly acquired property. Early records of the name mention Albric filius Cassandre, 1273, County Cambridge. Stephen Casse of Somerset, was documented during the reign of Edward III (1327-1377). Willelmus Casson, of Yorkshire, was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. Daniel Cass and Elizabeth Pritchard were married at St. George's Chapel, Mayfair, London in 1747.
The name was originally that of an ill-fated Trojan prophetess of classical legend, condemned to foretell the future, but never believed. Her story was well-known and widely popular in medieval England. During the Middle Ages, when people were unable to read or write, signs were needed for all visual identification. For several centuries city streets in Britain were filled with signs of all kinds, public houses, tradesmen and even private householders found them necessary. This was an age when there were no numbered houses, and an address was a descriptive phrase that made use of a convenient landmark. At this time, coats of arms came into being, for the practical reason that men went into battle heavily armed and were difficult to recognise. It became the custom for them to adorn their helmets with distinctive crests, and to paint their shields with animals and the like. Coats of arms accompanied the development of surnames, becoming hereditary in the same way.
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