By any standards this is an unusual surname. It is recorded in England in a number of spellings which include Darragon, Darridon, Darrigrand, Darrigoe, and maybe others. The fact that English pronunciation and spelling have been able to generally make a mess of it gives a clue to its origin. It is in fact French, and derives originally from 'Draco' paradoxically an Olde French word for a 'dragon'. In the context of the surname it is in a sense occupational for a soldier, and specifically a cavalryman, one who was a member of the 'Corps de Cavalerie'. Presumably being called a 'dragon' and riding a horse was intended to strike fear into the opposition. Quite how the name arrived in England is not clear, but having arrived here, and probably as a 'Huguenot' refugee name it soon developed its English variants. Recordings include Peter Darragone who married Jane Mino at the famous church of St Dunstans in the East, Stepney, on Christmas Day 1677, whilst later Paul Henry Darrigrand, married Mary Albert at the church of St Anne's Soho, Westminster, on January 5th 1729. The coat of arms, granted in France has, not surprisingly, the blazon of a rampant dragon. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Elizabetha Darrigoe, which was dated July 25th 1626, who married at St Martins in the Field, Westminster, during the reign of King Charles 1, known as 'The Martyr', 1625 - 1649. 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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