This German surname of MUNIZ was an occupational name for a moneyer, derived from the Old German word MUNZER, and the Yiddish word MINTSER, a derivative of MYNET, meaning 'coin'. The name was rendered in medieval documents in the Latin form MONETA, originally an epithet meaning 'Counsellor (from monere to advise) of Juno' at whose temple in Rome the coins were struck. The English term MINTER was used at an early date to denote a workman who stamped the coins; later it came to denote the supervisors of the mint, who were wealthy and socially elevated members of the merchant class, and who were responsible for the quality of the coinage by having their names placed on the coins. The name is also spelt MINTER, MONNIER, LEMMONNIER, MONETA, MONEDERO, MUNZER, MINTZ, MUNTER, DeMIENTER and DeMUNTER. 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. A notable of the name was Thomas MUNZER (circa.1498-1525) the German religious reformer and Anabaptist, born in Stolberg. He studied theology and in 1520 began to preach at Zwickau. His socialism and mystical doctrines soon brought him into collision with the authorities. After preaching widely, in 1525 he was elected pastor of the Anabaptists of Mulhausen, where his communistic ideas soon aroused the whole country. He joined the Peasant's Revolt of 1524-25, but was defeated at Frankenhausen and executed a few days later.
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