Vandergriff Coat of Arms / Vandergriff Family Crest
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. (Van de GRAAF). This Dutch surname of VANDERGRIFF was a locational name for someone who dwelt near the canal or moat. The name is also spelt VAN DE GRAAF, VAN DE GRAFF, VANDEGRIFFE and VANDEGRIFT. Dutchmen who have surnames from towns, cities or districts, are mostly distinguished by the prefix VAN. In the United States the use of capital and initial letters and spaces is optional with the particular family. The Dutch language is most closely related to Low German, and its surnames have been influenced both by German and French naming practices. The preposition 'van' is found especially with habitation names, and the 'de' mainly with nicknames. Habitation names were originally acquired by the original bearer of the name, who, having lived by, at or near a place, would then take that name as a form of identification for himself and his family. When people lived close to the soil as they did in the Middle Ages, they were acutely conscious of every local variation in landscape and countryside. Every field or plot of land was identified in normal conversation by a descriptive term. If a man lived on or near a hill or mountain, or by a river or stream, forests and trees, he might receive the word as a family name. Almost every town, city or village in early times, has served to name many families. Robert Jemison VAN DE GRAAFF (1909-67) was the American physicist, born in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. An engineering graduate, he was inspired to study physics at the Sorbonne in 1924. At the Massachusetts Institute of Technology he developed his generator which became a major tool of atomic and nuclear physicists. It is known as the VAN de GRAAFF generator. 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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