Guidi History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
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The distinguished surname Guidi can be traced back to the ancient and beautiful region of Venice. 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 were characterized by a profusion of derivatives coined from given names. 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. During the Middle Ages, Italians adopted the patronymic system of name-making because it perfectly complemented the prevailing Feudal System. In Italy the popularity of patronymic type of surname is also due to the fact that during the Christian era, people often named their children after saints and biblical figures. The surname Guidi came from the Italian personal name "Guido."
The personal name Guido is derived from the Germanic first name Wido, Wito, in turn derived from Widu, which is an abbreviated pet name of a number of proper names including Witpald, Widbert and Widbald. The Germanic element Widu is actually translated into English as wood.
Guido of Arezzo (c. 991-1033) was an Italian music theorist and pedagogue of the medieval era. He is generally thought to have invented the modern staff notation for music.
Early Origins of the Guidi family
The surname Guidi was first found in Bologna (Latin: Bononia), one of the more prosperous cities at this early time. Records are found in 1097 with Giacomo di Filippo Guidotti, who was the Bishop of Imola.
Early History of the Guidi family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Guidi research. More information is included under the topic Early Guidi History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Guidi 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 Guidi include Guidi, Guido, Ghio, Guidelli, Guidarelli, Guidetti, Guidini, Guidarini, Guidicini, Guiducci, Guiduzzi, Guidotti, Guidalotti, Guidoni, Guidone, Guidastri, Gui, Ghidelli, Ghidetti, Ghidini, Ghidoli, Ghidotti, Ghidoni, Ghiotti, Ghiotto, Ghilotto, Ghioni, Ghione, Ghini, Ghion, Guidobaldi, Guidobon, Guidobono and many more.
Early Notables of the Guidi family (pre 1700)
Prominent among members of the family was Tomaso de Giovanni de Simone Guidi, better known as Masaccio. Born in 1401 in Florence, he became a painter and had a large influence on Michelangelo. Among his famous works is the Branacci chapel in the church of Santa Maria del Carmine in Florence. Luca Ghini was a botanist in Bologna during the 15th century. He was also a professor at the University of Bologna and founded the botanical gardens of Pisa and of Florence. He was famous for his talents in preparing herbals and is documented as the first to...
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Migration of the Guidi family
Discovered in the immigration and passenger lists were a number of people bearing the name Guidi: Marco Ghilotto, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1880; Guy Guidry, aged 21, who arrived at Ellis Island, in 1923; Agostino Guido, aged 16, who arrived at Ellis Island from Carpeneto, Italy, in 1912.
Contemporary Notables of the name Guidi (post 1700) +
- Larry M. Guidi, American politician, Mayor of Hawthorne, California, 1998-2001 
- Guidi Fabrizio (b. 1972), Italian former road bicycle racer
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