Castelli History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The distinguished surname Castelli originated in an area of Italy, known as the Papal States. Although people were originally known only by a single name, it became necessary for people to adapt a second name to identify themselves as populations grew and travel became more frequent. The process of adopting fixed hereditary surnames was not complete until the modern era, but the use of hereditary family names in Italy began in the 10th and 11th centuries. Italian hereditary surnames were developed according to fairly general principles and they are characterized by a profusion of derivatives coined from given names. Although the most traditional type of family name found in the region of the Papal States is the patronymic surname, which is derived from the father's given name, local surnames are also found. Local names, which are the least frequent of the major types of surnames found in Italy, are derived from a place-name where the original bearer once resided or held land. Often Italian local surnames bore the prefix "di," which signifies emigration from one place to another, but does not necessarily denote nobility. The Castelli family lived at or near a "castle."

Early Origins of the Castelli family

The surname Castelli was first found in the year 1070, when Pantaleone Castelli was responsible for the construction of the bronze doors for the church of San Paolo.

Early History of the Castelli family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Castelli research. More information is included under the topic Early Castelli History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Castelli Spelling Variations

Surnames that originated in Italy are characterized by an enormous number of spelling variations. Some of these are derived from regional traditions and dialects. Northern names, for instance, often end in "o", while southern names tend to end in "i". Other variations come from the fact the medieval scribes tended to spell according to the sound of words, rather than any particular set of rules. The recorded variations of Castelli include Castelli, Castello, Castella, Castiello, Castiglio, Del Castello, Del Castiglio, Castelletti, Castelletto, Castelletta, Castellini, Castellino, Castellucci, Casteluccio, Castelluzzi, Castelluzzo, Castellotti, Castellotto, Castellone, Castiglione, Castiglioni, Castioni, Castellacci, Castellaccio, Castellazzi, Castellazzo, Castellani, Castellano, Castellana, Castellàn, Castellaneta, Castellari, Castellaro, Castellarini, Castellarìn, Castelfranco, Castelfranchi, Castelnovo, Castelnuovo, Castelnovi, Castelvecchio, Castelvecchi, Castelvetro and many more.

Early Notables of the Castelli family (pre 1700)

Prominent among members of the family was Alberto Castellani was mayor of Cerea in 1210, 1211, and again in 1229; Pierozzo Castellani was a priest in 1390; Luca Castellano was a priest in 1420; Agostino Castelli of Brescia was a military engineer and a prominent architect in 1488; the Da Castello family, who were landowners in Novara during the 12th century; Ludovico Castellani was a famous sculptor in Ferrara in the 15th century; Castellano Castellani was a nobleman in Florence around this time; Salvi Castellucci was a famous painter...
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Castelli Ranking

In the United States, the name Castelli is the 10,115th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [1] However, in France, the name Castelli is ranked the 2,402nd most popular surname with an estimated 2,500 - 3,000 people with that name. [2]

United States Castelli migration to the United States +

Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the name Castelli or a variant listed above:

Castelli Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Agoztini Castelli, aged 16, who immigrated to America from Vertinitti, in 1902
  • Albina Castelli, aged 25, who landed in America from Ansonia, Italy, in 1904
  • Alessandro Castelli, aged 24, who immigrated to the United States from Cerignale, Italy, in 1907
  • Adamo Castelli, aged 24, who landed in America from Mouterado, Italy, in 1909
  • A. Caterina Castelli, aged 21, who landed in America from Cerignole, Italy, in 1910
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Castelli migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Castelli Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mary Castelli, aged 16, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Alumbagh" in 1875 [3]

Contemporary Notables of the name Castelli (post 1700) +

  • Leo Castelli (1907-1999), born Leo Krausz, American art dealer
  • Claudia Castelli, American Democratic Party politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Ohio, 2004 [4]
  • Roberto Castelli (b. 1946), Italian politician, former Italian Minister of Justice
  • David Castelli (1836-1901), Italian scholar and educator in the field of secular Jewish studies
  • Juan José Castelli (1764-1812), Argentine lawyer, member of the first national government of Argentina
  • Ignaz Franz Castelli (1780-1862), Austrian dramatist

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  3. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from
  4. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 9) . Retrieved from on Facebook