From the northern Italian region of Emilia-Romagna
emerged a variety of surnames. People in this region 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
in Italy began as early as the 10th and 11th centuries. Vanzo as a surname was derived from a place-name where the original bearer once resided or held land. As such, it is categorized as a local
name, one of the least frequent of the major types of surnames found in Italy. Often Italian local surnames bore the prefix "di," which signified emigration from one place to another, but did not necessarily denote nobility. The Vanzo family lived the name Avanzo, which comes from the Italian verb avanzsare, which means to advance. This name would have been ascribed to a child, usually the first born son and family heir, whose birth had been long awaited. The name also reveals that the parents felt the birth of their child would fulfill their lives. In medieval times, it was generally believed that a child's name would in some way bestow good fortune on the family.
Early Origins of the Vanzo family
The surname Vanzo was first found in Bologna (Latin: Bononia), where in 1306, when Bartolomeo Avanzi was listed there as a landholder at that time.
Vanzo 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 Vanzo include Avancini, Avanzati, Avanzetti, Avanzi, Avanzini, Avanzo, Avanzaroli, Avanzolini, Davanzati, D'Avanzo, Davanzo, Vancini, Vanz, Vanzetti, Vanzetto, Vanzi, Vanzin, Vanzini and many more.
Early Notables of the Vanzo family (pre 1700)
Prominent among members of the family was Iacopo Avanzi, a painter in Bologna born in 1375, who is famous for his work entitled Crucifixion in the Galleria Collona in Rome; Vitale Avanzi was the bishop of Ascoli in 1389; Giovanni Francesco Avanzariani, a painter in Viterbo born in 1490, is known... Another 140 words (10 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Vanzo Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Vanzo family to the New World and Oceana
A look at the immigration and passenger lists has shown a number of people bearing the name Vanzo: P. Avanzo, aged 39, who landed in America, in 1893; Rosina Avanzo, aged 20, who settled in America from Nola, in 1898; Nicola Avanzo, aged 45, who landed in America from Del Lazio, Formicola, in 1898.