The associated coat of arms for this name are recorded in J.B Rietstaps Armorial General. Illustrated by V & H.V Rolland's. This Monumental work took 23 years to complete and 85,000 coats of Arms are included in this work. The surname MAST was derived from the Old French word 'maistre', a superior, a teacher. The name was originally rendered in the Latin form MAGISTER. In early instances this name was often borne by people who were franklins or other substantial freeholders, presumably because they had labourers under them to work their lands, and unlike smaller free tenants did not just till their property themselves. In Scotland the eldest sons of barons had this title, and the name may also have been acquired as an occupational nickname by a servant who worked in the household of the eldest son of a baron. The name is also spelt MASTER, MEYSTRE, MAISTRE, LEMAITRE, MESTER and MASTERSON, to name but a few. Early records of the name mention Robert de MEISTRE was recorded in the year 1202 in County Berkshire. Hamund le MESTER, was documented in the year 1273 in County Cambridge. Johannes MASTERE of Yorkshire was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. Thomas le MAYSTER, 1379, ibid. Edward Raby married Mary MASTERS at St. James's, Clerkenwell, London in 1746. In many parts of central and western Europe, hereditary surnames began to become fixed at around the 12th century, and have developed and changed slowly over the years. As society became more complex, and such matters as the management of tenure, and in particular the collection of taxes were delegated to special functionaries, it became imperative to distinguish a more complex system of nomenclature to differentiate one individual from another. In the Middle Ages heraldry came into use as a practical matter. It originated in the devices used to distinguish the armoured warriors in tournament and war, and was also placed on seals as marks of identity. As far as records show, true heraldry began in the middle of the 12th century, and appeared almost simultaneously in several countries of Western Europe.
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