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Ciphery Family Crest / Ciphery Coat of Arms

This Spanish and Italian surname of CIPHERY was derived from the medieval given name CEBRIAN, rendered in medieval documents in the Latin form CYPRIANUS, originally an ethnic name for an inhabitant of Cyprus, from the Greek KYPROS). The name was borne by a 3rd century bishop of Carthage and by another saint, probably legendary, whose cult was suppressed by the Holy See in 1969. The name is also spelt CEBRIAN, CEBRIA, and CIPRIANO. In the 8th century, Spain fell under the control of the Moors, and this influence, which lasted into the 12th century, has also left its mark on Hispanic surnames. A few names are based directly on Arabic personal names. The majority of Spanish occupational and nickname surnames, however, are based on ordinary Spanish derivatives. In Spain identifying patronymics are to be found as early as the mid-9th century, but these changed with each generation, and hereditary surnames seem to have come in slightly later in Spain than in England and France. As well as the names of the traditional major saints of the Christian Church, many of the most common Spanish surnames are derived from personal names of Germanic origin. For the most part these names are characteristically Hispanic. They derive from the language of the Visigoths, who controlled Spain between the mid-5th and early 8th centuries. A notable member of the name was Giambattista CIPRIANI (1727-85) the Italian historical painter, born in Florence. In 1755 he accompanied Sir William Chambers to London, where his graceful drawings, gained great popularity. He was a member of St. Martin's Lane Acadamy, and in 1768 was elected a foundation member of the Royal Acadamy. 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. The origins of Italian surnames are not clear, and much work remains to be done on medieval Italian records. It seems that fixed bynames, in some cases hereditary, were in use in the Venetian Republic by the end of the 10th century. The typical Italian surname endings are 'i' and 'o', the former being characteristic of northern Italy. The singular form 'o' is more typical of southern Italy.

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Last Updated: Dec. 1st, 2021

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