The associated coat of arms for this name are recorded in J.B Rietstaps Armorial General. Illustrated by V & H.V Rolland's. This Monumental work took 23 years to complete and 85,000 coats of Arms are included in this work. This Jewish surname of RABEN is a status name from the Polish word RABIN (ultimately from the Hebrew RAV) meaning 'RABBI'. This is the title of a Jewish scholar or teacher of civil and religious law from the New Testament, the Spiritual leader of a Jewish community, and senior officer in a Synagogue. The name has numerous variant spellings which include RABIN, RABINSKI, RABET, RAFF, RABINER, RABENU, RABINERSON, ROBINSOHN, RABINOV, and RABINOVICI, to name but a few. When traditional Jews were forced to take family names by the local bureaucracy, it was an obligation imposed from outside traditional society, and people often took the names playfully and let their imaginations run wild by choosing names which corresponded to nothing real in their world. No one alive today can remember the times when Jews took or were given family names (for most Ashkenazim this was the end of the 18th century or the beginning of the 19th) although many remember names being changed after emigration to other countries, such as the United States and Israel in recent years. A notable member of the name is Itzhak RABIN, born in 1922, the Israeli soldier and politician, born in Jerusalem. After studies at an agriculture school, he embarked on an army career, completing his training in Britain. He fought in the 'War of Independence' (1948-49) and represented the Israeli Defence Forces at the armistice in Rhodes. After serving as ambassador to the USA (1968-73) he moved into the political arena, becoming Labour party leader and prime minister (1974-77) and defence minister from 1984. 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.
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