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 surname of TEGETHOFF is a German occupational name for an official responsible for collecting, on behalf of the lord of the manor, tithes of agricultural produce owed as rent. The more prosperous tenants had to contribute wine and corn, those with smaller holdings, fruit, vegetables, milk, cheese, beer and poultry. The Old German term for this official was ZEHENDOERE. The surname is most common in Bavaria, Austria, Switzerland and Wurttemberg. Other spellings of the name include ZENER, ZEHENTNER, ZENTNER, CENTER, TEGEDER, TAGEDER, TEGTMANN, TEGETTHOFF and ZENTNER. 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 Baron Wilhem von TEGETTHOFF (1827-71) the Austrian naval commander, born in Marburg. He defeated the Danes of Heligoland in 1864 and an Italian fleet near Lissa in 1866, the first battle between ironclads. 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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