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Pygge Coat of Arms / Pygge Family Crest

The surname of PYGGE was an occupational name 'the keeper of the swine-herd' one who looked after the pigs. The name was derived from the Old English word PICGA. The earliest of the name on record appears to be Aluricus Piga, who was listed as a tenant in the Domesday Book of 1086. John Pig was recorded in Warwickshire in 1186, and Robert Pygge was recorded in Wakefield, Yorkshire in the year 1225. 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 name is also spelt Pig, Pigge, Pygg and Pigge. Goceline Pig appears in Norfolk in 1273, and Symon Pygge was documented during the reign of Edward III (1327-1377). Walter Pigge of Yorkshire, was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. Over the centuries, most people in Europe have accepted their surname as a fact of life, as irrevocable as an act of God, however much the individual may have liked or disliked the surname, they were stuck with it, and people rarely changed them by personal choice. A more common form of variation was in fact involuntary, when an official change was made, in other words, a clerical error. John Pittman and Alice Pigge (widow) were married in London in 1626 (no church recorded) and Richard Waite and Mary Pigge wed at St. George's, Hanover Square, London in 1787. Among the humbler classes of European society, and especially among illiterate people, individuals were willing to accept the mistakes of officials, clerks and priests as officially bestowing a new version of their surname, just as they had meekly accepted the surname they had been born with. In North America, the linguistic problems confronting immigration officials at Ellis Island in the 19th century were legendary as a prolific source of Anglicization. The name was found early in Scotland, and was recorded in Aberdeen as Pigge in the year 1273.

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Last Updated: Dec. 1st, 2021

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