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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2015

Where did the Italian Maselli family come from? What is the Italian Maselli family crest and coat of arms? When did the Maselli family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Maselli family history?

The distinguished surname Maselli can be traced back to the ancient and beautiful region of Piedmont. 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 Piedmont 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 Maselli came from the first-name Maso, which is the short form of the personal name Tommaso. The name Tommaso, or Thomas, is itself derived from the Aramaic "toma" which means "twin".


Enormous variation in spelling and form characterizes those Italian names that originated in the medieval era. This is caused by two main factors: regional tradition, and inaccuracies in the recording process. Before the last few hundred years, scribes spelled names according to their sounds. Spelling variations were the unsurprising result. The variations of Maselli include Masella, Maselli, Masellis, Masetti, Masetto, Masi, Masiello, Masillo, Masin, Masina, Masini, Masino, Masiol, Maso, Masolini, Masolo, Mason, Masoni, Masotti, Masselli, Massetti, Massini, Masucci, Masuccio, Masulli, Masullo, Masutti, Masutto and many more.

First found in Piedmont (Italian: Piemonte, Piedmontese and Occitan: Piemont) in the 13th century where early records show the Masini family, decedents of a long line of counts, lived and whose members included Oddone, elected captain of the commune in 1284, and Oddonnino, governor of a town, Vercelli, in 1290.


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


Another 331 words(24 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Maselli Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Immigrants bearing the name Maselli or a variant listed above include:

Maselli Settlers in United States in the 20th Century

  • Angelo Maselli, aged 16, who settled in America from Castelpagano, in 1904
  • Alfredo Maselli, aged 28, who emigrated to America from Ciro, Italy, in 1905
  • Angelo Maselli, aged 29, who landed in America from Cappaloni, Italy, in 1906
  • Angelo Maselli, aged 6, who emigrated to the United States from Pietracatello, Italy, in 1910
  • Achille Maselli, aged 19, who emigrated to the United States from Esperia, Italy, in 1910


  • Claudio Maselli (b. 1950), Italian professional former footballer and manager
  • Domenico Maselli (b. 1933), Italian politician and pastor
  • Francesco "Citto" Maselli (b. 1930), Italian film director and screenwriter


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  1. Battilana, Natale, Ed. Genealogie Dello Famiglie Nobili di Genova. Genova: Fratelli Pagano, 1825. Print.
  2. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  3. Fucilla, Josheph G. Our Italian Surnames. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0806311878).
  4. Glazier, Ira A. and P. Williams Filby Edition. Italians to America. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield. Print.
  5. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  6. Gheno, Antonio. Contributo alla Bibliografia Genealogica Italiana. Bologna: Forni, 1924. Print.
  7. Bongioanni, Angelo. Nomi e Cognomi. Saggio di Ricerche Etimologiche e Storiche. Torino: A. Forni, 1979. Print.
  8. Rietstap, Johannes Baptist. Armorial Général. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  9. Rasmussen, Louis J. . San Francisco Ship Passenger Lists 4 Volumes Colma, California 1965 Reprint. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1978. Print.
  10. Stiens, Robert E. Passenger list Italy to New York 1893 In Italian Genealogist. Torrance, CA: Augustan Society No 3, 1983. Print.
  11. ...

The Maselli Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Maselli Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 31 March 2013 at 21:27.

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