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Katona Coat of Arms / Katona Family Crest

Katona Coat of Arms / Katona Family Crest

This surname of KATONA was a Hungarian and Jewish occupational name for a soldier. The name was derived from the Hungarian word KATONA. The name was given to an officer in charge of military affairs in the household of a medieval king, prince or noble. Many highly skilled and specialized craftsmen were employed in such a way. The principal officers who performed this supervisory duty for the lords were obviously better paid than the serfs and occupied positions of respect in the community. Many of the modern family names throughout Europe reflect the profession or occupation of their forbears in the Middle Ages and derive from the position held by their ancestors in the village, noble household or religious community in which they lived and worked. The addition of their profession to their birth name made it easier to identify individual tradesmen and craftsmen. As generations passed and families moved around, so the original identifying names developed into the corrupted but simpler versions that we recognise today. The Hungarian language is quite distinct from its Germanic and Slavonic neighbours, and is of Finno-Ugric rather than European origin, and so it is related to Finnish. However, the strongest cultural influence in historical times has been German, and the pattern of Hungarian surnames is similar to that found in Germany and Austria. In the 19th century, surnames ending in 'Y' came to be considered more aristocratic than those ending in 'I', although it has been shown that the alternation between these two letters depended on the whim of a clerk, and had no connection with rank. Hungarian heraldry shows a marked preference for charges or devices associated with the Turkish wars which were a feature of Hungarian history from the 15th to the 18th centuries. A great number of all Hungarian armorial bearings feature a decapitated Turk's head, moustached and turbanned. Sabres, swords and lances are brandished and lions, gryphons or horsemen are all depicted in a fiery and war-like manner.


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Last Updated: Dec. 1st, 2021

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