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Wassenaar Coat of Arms / Wassenaar Family Crest

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. (WASSENAAR). This surname of WASSENAAR was a German and Jewish occupational name for a gatherer or seller of beeswax. This was an important occupation in early times, wax being used to make candles and for sealing letters. Other spellings of the name include WACHS, WASSMAN, WASSENER, VACKS and VAKSMAN. 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. A notable member of the name was August Paul von WASSERMAN (1866-1925) the German bacteriologist, born in Bamberg. He studied medicine at Erlangen, Vienna, Munich and Strasbourg, and worked at bacteriology and chemotherapy at the Robert Koch Institute in Berlin from 1890. 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. German or Teutonic heraldry extended its sphere of influence over central Europe and spread into Scandinavia. It is most notable for its design and treatment of crests, most of which reflect the arms in the charge or tinctures (colours) or both, which is unknown in British heraldry. Teutonic Europe assembled many arms on a single shield, each bearing its corresponding crest on a helmet.

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Last Updated: Dec. 1st, 2021

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