This surname of MARKGRAF is of two origins. It was originally from the Latin Marcus, the personal name of St Mark the Evangelist, author of the second Gospel. The name was borne also by a number of other early Christian saints. MARCUS was an old Roman name of uncertain etymology; it may have some connection with the war God Mars. The given name was not as popular in England in the Middle Ages as it was on the Continent, especially in Italy, where the evangelist became the patron of Venice and the Venetian Republic, and was allegedly buried at Aquileia. The name was also applied to a military keeper of the marches or borders. The name has numerous variant spellings which include MARGRAFF, MARGRAF, MARGRAVE MARQUET, MAROKVITCH, MARCOWITZ, MARKOWSKY, MARKOVICI and MARKOVSKY. It was not until the 10th century that modern hereditary surnames first developed, and the use of fixed names spread, first to France, and then England, then to Germany and all of Europe. In these parts of Europe, the individual man was becoming more important, commerce was increasing and the exact identification of each man was becoming a necessity. Even today however, the Church does not recognise surnames. Baptisms and marriages are performed through use of the Christian name alone. Thus hereditary names as we know them today developed gradually during the 11th to the 15th century in the various European countries. Andreas Sigismund MARGGRAF (1709-82) was the chemist, born in Berlin. He worked with his father, an apothecary in Berlin, studied in several German cities, and became director of the chemical laboratory at the German Academy of Sciences, Berlin. He introduced the use of microscope in chemical research, but is noted particularly for the discovery of sugar in sugar-beet (1747) and so prepared the way for the sugar-beet industry. 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.
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