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 German surname of ORF is of two-fold origin. It was a habitation name from a place in Hesse, near Kassal, now known as URFF, but recorded in 1184 as ORPHA. The place is of obscure etymology. Many of the modern family names throughout Europe reflect the profession or occupation of their forbears in the Middle Ages and derive from the position held by their ancestors in the village, noble household or religious community in which they lived and worked. The name was also an occupational name for a fisherman or fish-seller. Other spellings of the name include ORFE and ORFF. A notable member of the name was Carl ORFF (1895-1982) the composer, born in Munich, Germany. He studied at Munich, where he helped found the Gunther music school in 1925. The influence of Stravisky is apparent in his compositions. He is best known for his operatic setting of a 13th century poem 'Carmina Burana' (1937). Later works include 'Oedipus' (1959) and 'Prometheus' (1966). Because of the close relationship between the English and German languages, some Germans are able to transform their names to the English form just by dropping a single letter. Many Germans have re-spelt their names in America. A great number of immigrants from Germany settled in Pennsylvania. After the start of the first World War, Germans in great numbers Anglicized their names in an effort to remove all doubt as to their patriotism. Afterwards some changed back, and then during World War II the problem became acute once more, and the changing started all over again, although not with as much intensity. German or Teutonic heraldry extended its sphere of influence over central Europe and spread into Scandinavia. It is most notable for its design and treatment of crests, most of which reflect the arms in the charge or tinctures (colours) or both, which is unknown in British heraldry. Teutonic Europe assembled many arms on a single shield, each bearing its corresponding crest on a helmet.
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