The associated arms are recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory. Ulster King of Arms in 1884. Confirmed by Roberts, Ulster in 1648 to De Rinzey Massam, son and heir of William Massam, who was son and heir of William Massam, Receiver General of the Revenue in Ireland, descended from a 'right noble and most ancient family'. The name was brought into England and has given name to a market town and parish in the North Riding of Yorkshire. Early records of the name mention Robert de Masseham, who was documented during the reign of Edward III (1327-1377) and Edward Massam of Yorkshire, was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. During the Middle Ages, when people were unable to read or write signs were needed for all visual identification. For several centuries city streets in Britain were filled with signs of all kinds, public houses, tradesmen and even private householders found them necessary. This was an age when there were no numbered houses, and an address was a descriptive phrase that made use of a convenient landmark. At this time, coats of arms came into being, for the practical reason that men went into battle heavily armed and were difficult to recognise. It became the custom for them to adorn their helmets with distinctive crests, and to paint their shields with animals and the like. Coats of arms accompanied the development of surnames, becoming hereditary in the same way. Later instances of the name include William Masham of London, who registered at Oxford University in 1606, and John Masham was buried at Kensington Church in 1660. Sir Francis Masham and Mrs Damarus Cudworth were married in Canterbury, Kent in the year 1685.
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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