The Italian surname of ANGELI was an occupational name, one who acted as a religious messenger or as a messenger from God, also a nickname for an angelic person. The Puritans could not oust this name, although bitterly hated by them. The name is also spelt as Angelini, Angelis, and Angello. The origin of badges and emblems, are traced to the earliest times, although, Heraldry, in fact, cannot be traced later than the 12th century, or at furthest the 11th century. At first armorial bearings were probably like surnames and assumed by each warrior at his free will and pleasure, his object being to distinguish himself from others. It has long been a matter of doubt when bearing Coats of Arms first became hereditary. It is known that in the reign of Henry V (1413-1422), a proclamation was issued, prohibiting the use of heraldic ensigns to all who could not show an original and valid right, except those 'who had borne arms at Agincourt'. The College of Arms (founded in 1483) is the Royal corporation of heralds who record proved pedigrees and grant armorial bearings. The bulk of European surnames in countries such as England and France were formed in the 13th and 14th centuries. The process started earlier and continued in some places into the 19th century, but the norm is that in the 11th century people did not have surnames, whereas by the 15th century they did.
A notable member of this name was Fra ANGELICO whose monastic name was Giovanni da Fiesole (c.l400-l455) the Italian painter born in Vicchio in Tuscany. As a young man he entered the Dominican monastery of San Domenico near Florence. The community was obliged to leave the area in l409-l4l8 and sometime after its return Angelico began to paint. In l436 he was transferred to Florence and in l445 he was summoned by the Pope to Rome where he worked until his death. His most important frescoes are in the Florentine Convent of San Marco which is now a museum. In l447 he began a Last Judgement which was finished by Fignorelli. In Rome only the frescoes in the Chapel of Nicholas V survive. Of his easel pictures a splendid "Coronation of the Virgin" is held by the Louvre and a "Glory" by the London National Gallery.
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