This name SELZER is of a family of Shropshire origin, where John de le Sel was recorded at Shrewsbury Abbey in 1211. The family's wealth was derived from the manufacture of salt, as was its surname. They owned salt-springs in Shropshire and Cheshire, but around 1475 these were sold, the proceeds were divided, and the family dispersed. SELZER was an occupational name 'the salter' a manufacturer and dealer in salt. Many royal or noble households, during the middle ages gave rise to family names that reflected the occupation or profession of the original bearer of the name. The name is also spelt SALTER, SAULNIER, SOLTER, SALZER and LE SALTER. The earliest of the name on record mention Robert Philip le Salter, who was documented in County Somerset in 1243. Thomas le Selter appears in County Sussex in 1296, and John Saltman was listed in London in 1300. Willelmus Salter of Yorkshire, was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. Between the 11th and 15th centuries it became customary for surnames to be assumed in Europe, but were not commonplace in England or Scotland before the Norman Conquest of 1066. They are to be found in the Domesday Book of 1086. Those of gentler blood assumed surnames at this time, but it was not until the reign of Edward II (1307-1327) that second names became general practice for all people. A later instance of the name was William Prior and Mary Salter who were married at St. Mary, Aldermary, London in the year 1597. During the Middle Ages, when people were unable to read or write, signs were needed for all visual identification. For several centuries city streets in Britain were filled with signs of all kinds, public houses, tradesmen and even private householders found them necessary. This was an age when there were no numbered houses, and an address was a descriptive phrase that made use of a convenient landmark. At this time, coats of arms came into being, for the practical reason that men went into battle heavily armed and were difficult to recognise. It became the custom for them to adorn their helmets with distinctive crests, and to paint their shields with animals and the like. Coats of arms accompanied the development of surnames, becoming hereditary in the same way.
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