The surname of DISON was a baptismal name 'the son of Dionisia' from the nickname Dye or Dy. It was a popular font name during the 12th century. Almost all the Dysons hail from Yorkshire, where it was the most popular font name. Early records of the name mention Johannes Dison, listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. Dionisia uxor Thome Dison, 1379, ibid. 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. A later instance of the name includes Thomas Dyeson and Elizabeth Cox who were married at St. Peter, Cornhill, London in the year 1688. The associated arms are recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory. Ulster King of Arms in 1884. A notable member of the name was Sir Frank Watson DYSON (1868-1939) an English astronomer. He was born in Measham. He was the Astronomer-royal for Scotland (1905-10) and England (1919-33). He is known for his work on the distribution of stars and on solar eclipses. Family names are a fashion we have inherited from the times of the Crusades in Europe, when knights identified one another by adding their place of birth to their first or Christian names. With so many knights, this was a very practical step. In the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries the nobles and upper classes, particularly those descended from the knights of the Crusades, recognised the prestige an extra name afforded them, and added the surname to the simple name given to them at birth.
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