Last name: Balas

Recorded in some sixty spelling forms as shwn below, and from the Middle Ages found in almost every European country except strangely, the British Isles, this is a surname of Babylonian origins. It derives from the two personal names Balthazar and Belshazzar, which it is claimed were originally quite separate in their meaning, but by the time of the famous 12th century a.d. Christian crusades to try to force the Muslims to release their grip on Jerusalem and Palestine, had become 'fused' as one. In both cases the origination was from another and earlier personal name 'Baal,' whose precise meaning is obscure, but may have been mythical and to have referred to a god with horns. To this was added the phrases either 'tas assar' meaning the preserver of life, or 'sharazzur', the rather similar protector of the king. However in the Christian faith the main reason for the popularity of the name was because it was believed to be the name of one of the three wise men who attended the birth of the Christ. The many examples of the surname recording include such spellings as Balser, Baltzer, Balzer (Germany), Balthas, Baltus and Baldus (France), Baldassari and Balsari (Italy), Baltasar (Portugese), Balcar (Polish), Balac and Balas (Czech), and Boldizar (Hungary). It is even recorded in Denmak as Baltersen and in Armenia as Bogdassian or Bogdikian.

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