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. This French, Italian, Spanish, Portugese, Czech, Polish, Russian, German and English surname was originally from the Middle English given name MICHAEL. This is ultimately from the Hebrew MICHA-EL 'Who is like God?', a name borne by various minor biblical characters as well as by an archangel, the protector of Israel (Dan. 10:13). In Christian tradition, MICHAEL was regarded as the warrior archangel, conqueror of Satan, and the given name was correspondingly popular throughout Europe, especially in knightly and military families. The name has numerous variants which include MICHAELIS, MICHEL, MICHEAU, MIGUEL, MICHAL, CHONET, CHONILLON, MICHIELETTI, MICHALKE, MICHELK, MIKO, MICHALEC and CHELAZZI, to name but a few. It was not until the 10th century that modern hereditary surnames first developed, and the use of fixed names spread, first to France, and then England, then to Germany and all of Europe. In these parts of Europe, the individual man was becoming more important, commerce was increasing and the exact identification of each man was becoming a necessity. Even today however, the Church does not recognise surnames. Baptisms and marriages are performed through use of the Christian name alone. Thus hereditary names as we know them today developed gradually during the 11th to the 15th century in the various European countries. A notable member of the name was Johann David MICHAELIS (1717-91) the German Protestant theologian, born in Halle. He was professor of philosophy (1746) and oriental languages (1750) at Gottingen. He wrote an 'Introduction to the New Testament' (1750). Leonor MICHAELIS (1875-1949) was the German-born American biochemist, born in Berlin. He was professor at Berlin (1908-22) and the Nagoya Medical School in Japan (1922-26). He then went to the United States to John Hopkins (1926-29) and the Rockefeller Institute (1929-40).
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