Show ContentsGrasso History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

From the historical and fascinating Italian region of Venice emerged a multitude of noble families, including the distinguished Grasso family. 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 common type of family name found in the region of Venice is the patronymic surname, which is derived from the father's given name, the nickname type of surname is also frequently found. Nickname surnames were derived from an eke-name, or added name. They usually reflected the physical characteristics or attributes of the first person that used the name. The surname Grasso came from a person who was corpulent or stout. The surname Grassi is derived from the word grasso, which means overweight.

Early Origins of the Grasso family

The surname Grasso was first found in the city of Milan, in the region of Lombardy

Early History of the Grasso family

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

Grasso Spelling Variations

Italian surnames come in far more variations than the names of most other nationalities. Regional traditions and dialects are a decisive factor in this characteristic. For example, northern names tend to end in "o", while southern in "i". Also important, but not unique to Italy, was the fact that before dictionaries and the printing press most scribes simply spelled words according to their sounds. The predictable result was an enormous number of spelling variations. The recorded spellings of Grasso include Grassi, Grasso, De Grassi, Degrassi, Lo Grasso, La Grassa, Grasselli, Grassellini, Grassaleoni, Grassilli, Grassigli, Grassetti, Grassini, Grassani and many more.

Early Notables of the Grasso family (pre 1700)

Prominent among bearers of this family in early times was Giovannino De Grassi, an architect, sculptor, and miniaturist from Lombardy who helped to engineer the Milan Cathedral in the early 15th century. Nascimbene Grassaleoni of Ferrara became mayor of Sassuolo in 1418; Uguccione Grassaleoni was a lawyer and then Judge of the Commune of Ferrara in 1459. Carlo Grassi (1520-1571) was an Italian Roman Catholic bishop and cardinal. Giacomo di Grassi was an Italian fencing master who wrote the fencing treatise Ragione di adoprar sicuramente l'Arme, si...
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Grasso Ranking

In the United States, the name Grasso is the 5,788th most popular surname with an estimated 4,974 people with that name. [1] However, in France, the name Grasso is ranked the 9,034th most popular surname with an estimated 500 - 1,000 people with that name. [2]

United States Grasso migration to the United States +

Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Grasso were among those contributors:

Grasso Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • John Grasso, who arrived in Arkansas in 1906 [3]
  • Alfio Grasso, aged 57, who immigrated to the United States from Carlentini, Sicily, in 1907
  • Alfio Grasso, aged 28, who landed in America from Viagrande, Sicily, in 1907
  • Agnello Grasso, aged 31, who landed in America from Arrano, Italy, in 1907
  • Alfio Grasso, aged 26, who immigrated to America from Liutun, Italy, in 1909
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Grasso (post 1700) +

  • Richard Grasso (b. 1946), chairman and chief executive of the New York Stock Exchange (1995 to 2003)
  • Francis Grasso (1948-2001), American disc jockey
  • Domenico Grasso (b. 1955), American engineer and educator
  • Ella born Giovanna Olivia Tambussi Grasso (1919-1981), American politician and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom
  • Salvatore Grasso, American Democratic Party politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from New York, 1980 [4]
  • Michael Grasso, American Republican politician, Candidate for Maryland State House of Delegates District 13-A, 1998 [4]
  • Michael Grasso Jr., American Republican politician, Candidate for U.S. Representative from Pennsylvania 1st District, 1960 [4]
  • Ella Tambussi Grasso (1919-1981), American Democratic Party politician, Secretary of State of Connecticut, 1959-71; U.S. Representative from Connecticut 6th District, 1971-75; Governor of Connecticut, 1975-80 [4]
  • Alexander Grasso, American Democratic Party politician, Candidate for New York State Assembly from Schenectady County 2nd District, 1928; Candidate for U.S. Representative from New York 31st District, 1944 [4]
  • Stephen Grasso (b. 1979), British writer and occultist

Triangle Waist Company
  • Miss Rosie Grasso (b. 1895), Italian garment worker who was working at Triangle Waist Company factory at the Asch building in Greenwich Village on the 25th March 1911 when fire broke out; she died in the fire [5]

  1. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  3. 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)
  4. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, December 1) . Retrieved from
  5. Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire (retrieved on 3rd August 2021.) Retrieved from on Facebook