This Spanish, Italian and Portugese name of MACEDO is a topographic name for someone who lived by an apple tree or orchard, from the Spanish 'manzano' (apple-tree) and rendered in medieval documents in the Latin form MATIANA, a type of apple named in honour of the Ist century B.C. horticultural writer Gaius MATIUS. The name is also spelt MASSANA, MACHADO, MANZANARES, MACEDONIO, and MANZANO. 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 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. A notable member of the name was Alessandro MANZONI (1785-1837) the Italian novelist and poet, born in Milan of a noble family. He went to Paris from 1805 to 1807, published his first poems in 1806, married happily in 1810 and spent the next few years in writing sacred lyrics and treatise on the religious basis of morality. The work which gave him European fame is his historical novel 'I Promessi Sposi' (The Betrothed), a Milanese story of the 17th century, the most notable novel in Italian literature. Despite his Catholic devoutness, he was a strong advocate of a united Italy, and became a senator of the kingdom in 1860. The eagle depicted in the crest is emblematical of fortitude and magnanimity of mind. The Romans used the figure of an eagle for their ensign, and their example has been often followed. It is the device of Russia, Austria, Germany and the United States of America.
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