The surname of HECTOR is a Scottish and Irish surname, an Anglicized form of the Gaelic personal name EACHDONN, composed of the elements EACH (horse) and DONN (brown). The name has been assimilated to that of one of the princes of Troy. The surname is also found in Yorkshire, where it may derive directly from a rare medieval given name; according to medieval legend Britain derived its name from being founded by Brutus, a Trojan exile, and so Hector was occasionally chosen as a given name. 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. HECTOR Medicus is mentioned in connection with the lands of Balgillachy in the sheriffdom of Forfar, Scotland, and appears to be the first of the name on record in 1369. Master Robert HECTOR was the vicar of Northmewene in 1525, and James HECTOR claimed to the the principal gunner of Dunbar castle in 1565. There was an Aberdeenshire family of this name, probably connected with the HECTORSONS. In the Middle Ages the Herald (old French herault) was an officer whose duty it was to proclaim war or peace, carry challenges to battle and messages between sovereigns; nowadays war or peace is still proclaimed by the heralds, but their chief duty as court functionaries is to superintend state ceremonies, such as coronations, installations, and to grant arms. Edward III (1327-1377) appointed two heraldic kings-at-arms for south and north, England in 1340. The English College of Heralds was incorporated by Richard III in 1483-84.
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