Catalan History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

From the ancient and picturesque Italian region of Venice emerged a variety of distinguished names, including the notable surname Catalan. Although people were originally known only by a single name, it became necessary for people to adopt 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 Venice 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 Catalan family lived in Bologna, where a member of the Catalano family was a military Commander in 1200.

Early Origins of the Catalan family

The surname Catalan was first found in Bologna (Latin: Bononia), where a member of the Catalano family was a military commander in 1200. One of the earliest records of the family was Jordanus Catalani ( fl. c. 1321-1330), French Dominican missionary and explorer in Asia known for his Mirabilia describing the marvels of the East. He was the first bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Quilon, the first Catholic diocese in India.

Early History of the Catalan family

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

Catalan Spelling Variations

In comparison with other European surnames, Italian surnames have a surprising number of forms. They reflect the regional variations and the many dialects of the Italian language, each with its own distinctive features. For example, in Northern Italy the typical Italian surname suffix is "i", whereas in Southern Italy it is "o". Additionally, spelling changes frequently occurred because medieval scribes and church officials often spelled names as they sounded rather than according to any specific spelling rules. The spelling variations in the name Catalan include Catalano, Catalani, Catalàn, Catelani, Catalanotto and many more.

Early Notables of the Catalan family (pre 1700)

Prominent among members of the family was Carlo Catalan of Cagliari, who was a nobleman and was given the investiture of the reign of Sardinia by Pope Boniface VIII in the 13th century. Ottavio Catalani was a talented organist in 1550. Antonio Catalano also called Catalani or il Siciliano, (1560-1630) was an Italian painter of the late- Renaissance and early-Baroque periods. He was born in Messina, Sicily, where he probably received some training from his father Antonio Catalano the Elder. Antonio Catalani also called Il Romano (c. 1596-1666 ) was...
Another 89 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Catalan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Catalan migration to the United States +

A look at the immigration and passenger lists has shown a number of people bearing the name Catalan:

Catalan Settlers in United States in the 16th Century
  • Juan Catalan, who immigrated to Nombre de Dios, Panama in 1535
  • Anton Catalan, who settled in the Spanish Main in 1549
Catalan Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Antonio Catalan, who arrived in America in 1814 [1]
  • Gonzalo Catalan, who arrived in Puerto Rico in 1834 [1]
  • Juan Catalan, who landed in Nombre de Dios, Panama in 1835 [1]
  • Pedro Catalan, who arrived in New Spain in 1836 [1]
  • Francisco Catalan, who landed in Puerto Rico in 1845 [1]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Catalan (post 1700) +

  • Eugène Charles Catalan (1814-1894), French and Belgian mathematician

  1. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8) on Facebook
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