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Engberg Coat of Arms / Engberg Family Crest

This surname of ENGBERG was a Swedish and Danish ornamental name from the Old Swedish ANG meaning meadow. In some cases the name was perhaps chosen by someone who lived beside a meadow. This is one of the many Swedish surnames that were coined in the 19th century from vocabulary words denoting aspects of the countryside, and which were also used more or less arbitrarily to form compound surnames. The name has many variant spellings which include ENGH, ENGMAN, ENGDAHL, ENGLUND and ENGSTROM. Early records of the name in England mention William Inganie was listed in the Domesday Book of 1086. John de Engen of the County of Yorkshire in 1273. John le Engene of Wakefield in County Yorkshire in 1275. William Dengayne of Canterbury, County Kent in 1279. Originally the coat of arms identified the wearer, either in battle or in tournaments. Completely covered in body and facial armour the knight could be spotted and known by the insignia painted on his shield, and embroidered on his surcoat, the draped garment which enveloped him. During the 17th century surnames were brought to Britain, North America and southern Africa by French Huguenot exiles. The Huguenots were French Protestants, and in 1572 large numbers of them were massacred in Paris on the orders of Queen Catherine de'Medici. Many of the survivors sought refuge in England and elsewhere. Although the Edict of Nantes (1598) officially guaranteed religious toleration, persecution continued, and the Edict was revoked by Louis XIV in 1685. It was then the trickle of emigration became a flood. Many migrated to England, while others joined groups of Dutch Protestants settling around the Cape of Good Hope. Others sailed across the Atlantic to establish themselves in North America. When the first immigrants from Europe went to America, the only names current in the new land were Indian names which did not appeal to Europeans vocally, and the Indian names did not influence the surnames or Christian names already possessed by the immigrants. Mostly the immigrant could not read or write and had little or no knowledge as to the proper spelling, and their names suffered at the hands of the government officials. The early town records are full of these mis-spelt names most of which gradually changed back to a more conventional spelling as education progressed.

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last updated on: September 13 2018

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