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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2016


Massin is a name of ancient Norman origin. It arrived in England with the Norman Conquest of 1066. It is a name for a stone-mason. The name was originally derived from the Old English or Old French word masson. [1]

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A multitude of spelling variations characterize Norman surnames. Many variations occurred because Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England also had a pronounced effect, as did the court languages of Latin and French. Therefore, one person was often referred to by several different spellings in a single lifetime. The various spellings include Mason, Masson and others.

First found in various counties and shires throughout Britain but one of the oldest was found in Kent on the Isle of Thanet. One of the earliest records on the name was found in London c. 1130 when John Macun was listed there at that time. A few years later, Ace le mazun was listed in the Pipe Rolls of Herefordshire in 1193 and Roger le Mason was listed in Oxfordshire in 1200. The Feet of Fines of Essex lists Godrey le Mascun in 1203 and Adam le Machon was listed in the Assize Roles of Northumberland in 1279. [2] The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 list Gotte le Mazoun in Huntingdonshire; and Nicholas le Macun in Buckinghamshire. The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 list Willelmus Mason, mason. [3] About this time and perhaps before, Scotland had early listings of the name. They include: Richard the Mason, burgess of Aberdeen in 1271; John le Massum of Gascony who had claim against the bishop of St. Andrews in 1288; and William dictus Masceon who had a charter of land in the burgh of Berwick in 1307. [4]


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Massin research. Another 151 words (11 lines of text) covering the years 1586, 1635, 1615, 1629, 1686, 1652, 1660, 1716, 1690, 1735, 1650, 1676, 1633, 1685, 1673, 1646, 1694, 1683 and 1770 are included under the topic Early Massin History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 295 words (21 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Massin Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Massin family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 155 words (11 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Many English families left England, to avoid the chaos of their homeland and migrated to the many British colonies abroad. Although the conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and some travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute, once in the colonies, many of the families prospered and made valuable contributions to the cultures of what would become the United States and Canada. Research into the origins of individual families in North America has revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Massin or a variant listed above:

Massin Settlers in United States in the 18th Century


  • Anna Maria Massin, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1729

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The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Dum spiro spero
Motto Translation: While I have breath I have hope.

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  1. ^ Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges, A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8)
  2. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  4. ^ Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)

Other References

  1. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  2. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds. Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  3. Library of Congress. American and English Genealogies in the Library of Congress. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1967. Print.
  4. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  5. Marcharn, Frederick George. A Constitutional History of Modern England 1485 to the Present. London: Harper and Brothers, 1960. Print.
  6. Hanks, Hodges, Mills and Room. The Oxford Names Companion. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002. Print. (ISBN 0-19-860561-7).
  7. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  8. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  9. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1790. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  10. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  11. ...

The Massin Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Massin 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 2 October 2015 at 08:51.

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