This is a late medieval metonymic occupational name for a boatman or ferryman. It derives from the Latin "barca", meaning boat, and is recorded both in Italy and Spain as Barca, and the more popular Barco, and Barquero. The name can also be habitational from any of a number of places so called, however, the habitational name is believed to have a different etymology and to mean a "hay-stack or a place where hay was stored". It is also possible that the name when habitational is a development of the ancient "berg" or "barg", meaning a hill or eminence. The name recordings include the following examples: Franchesco Barca, and his wife, Archangela Nei Falco, who were witnesses at the christening of their son, Luca, at Mussomeli, Caltanissetta, Italy, on June 28th 1892, whilst earlier, on May 11th 1833, Maria Barca married Ramon Ventura at San Baudillo de Llobregat, Barcelona, Spain. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Pietro Barca, which was dated June 29th 1583, christened at Lipari, Messina, Italy, during the reign of Rudulf 11, Holy Roman Emperor, 1576 - 1612. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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