The surname of CHAVES was a Portugese habitation name from a place in the province of Tras-os-Montes, so called from the Latin FLAVIIS, the place of the waters of Flavius. It was the site of sulphurous springs with supposedly health-giving properties, around which a settlement was founded in the 1st century AD by the Emperor Vespasian. Portugese surnames share many of the features of Spanish surnames, in particular Arabic and Visigothic influence. A notable feature of Portugese surnames is the class of religious names referring to festivals of the church or attributes of the Virgin Mary. One respect in which Portugese names differ from those of the rest of the Iberian peninsular, is that some were adopted at a comparatively late date and honour saints who did not give rise to surnames in other languages. Portugese names typically have the ending 'eiro'. The associated coat of arms is recorded in Rietstaps Armorial General. Registered in Italy. 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. The name is also spelt CHAVEZ. A notable member of the name was Fray Angelico CHAVEZ, born 10th April, 1910 in Wagon Bound, New Mexico. He was a Franciscan Priest, Author, and Pastor. He wrote several published articles.
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