The surname of WEILAND is a German habitation name from any of various places in Baden, Wurttemberg and Bavaria, so called from the Latin word VILLA. The name meant that the bearer of the name lived in a village as opposed to an isolated farmhouse, or in a town opposed to the countryside, and later came to mean a group of houses forming a settlement. The name is also spelt WEILL, WEILE, WEILLER and WEILER. Surnames which were derived from ancient Germanic personal names have the same meaning in many languages. The court of Charlemagne (Charles the Great, king of the Franks (742-814) was Christian and Latin speaking), the vernacular was the Frankish dialect of Old High German, and the personal names in use were Germanic and vernacular. These names were adopted in many parts of northwest Europe, particularly among the noble ruling classes. Hereditary surnames were found in Germany in the second half of the 12th century - a little later than in England and France. It was about the 16th century that they became stabilized. Notables of the name include Kurt WEILL (1900-50) the German composer, born in Dessau. A refugee from the Nazis, he settled in the United States in 1934. In all his works WEILL was influenced by jazz idioms; his later songs, operas and musical comedies, rank among the finest musical products written for the American stage. They include 'Lady in the Dark' (1940) and 'Street Scene' (1946). Andre WEIL, born in 1906, the French mathematician, born in Paris. He studied at the University of Paris, spent two years in India, Strasbourg, the United States and Brazil, before settling at Princeton in 1958. One of the most brilliant mathematicians of the century, he has also written on the history of maths. Because of the close relationship between the English and German languages, some Germans are able to transform their names to the English form just by dropping a single letter. Many Germans have re-spelt their names in America. A great number of immigrants from Germany settled in Pennsylvania. After the start of the first World War, Germans in great numbers Anglicized their names in an effort to remove all doubt as to their patriotism. Afterwards some changed back, and then during World War II the problem became acute once more, and the changing started all over again, although not with as much intensity.
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