Double-barrelled surnames, usually created following a marriage between two families, have no overall meaning as a unit, but the separate parts have their own history and derivation. In this instance, both names are of Italian origin, Italy being a country in which surnames derived from given names are the most widespread type. A characteristic of Italian surnames is the profusion of derivatives, overwhelmingly diminutive, but often augmentative, that have been coined from the base form of given names.The suffix "Basso", and its variants "Bas(s)i, Bassetti" and "Bas(s)ini", short, small, is frequently fused with the male given name "Iacob" (Jacob), itself coming from the Hebrew "aqob", supplanter, following-after. On July 5th 1857, the birth of one Lorenze Basini was registered at Denno, Trento, Italy. The suffix "gazza, cazzi", magpie, is often found attached to the personal name Domenico (from the Latin "Dominicus", of the Lord), as in "Domenicazzi". On December 21st 1891, Maria, daughter of Giacomo Gazzi and Arcangela Herminia Bustaffi, was christened at Ostiglia, Mantova, Italy. A Coat of Arms granted to the Basini family, depicting a red two-towered castle on a gold shield, is recorded heraldically in Rietstap's "Armorial General". A silver dove, holding in his beak a banner inscribed with the words "Pax virtuti comes", is between the towers. The Arms of the Gazzi family depicts three magpies proper on a gold shield. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Maria Basin, which was dated February 7th 1763, marriage to Josef Zelger, at Deutschnofen, Bolzano, Italy, during the reign of Francis 1 of Lorraine, Holy Roman Emperor, 1745 - 1765. 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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