Recorded in England as de Vas, Devas, and Vas, and in France as Vas, Vaslin, Vass, Vasse, and possible others, this is a French surname. In the British Isles it is one which has been well recorded since the time of the famous Huguenot Protestant refugees in the 17th century. It is probably locational from a place or places called Vars in the departements of Haute-Saone and Charente, although in ancient times the word vass described tenanted lands, so it is possible that it was from that origin. Examples of early recordings taken from surviving registers of Greater London include Jaques de Vas at the famous Huguenot church in the city known as the French Church, Threadneedle Street. This was on December 20th 1696, and again at the same place but on July 16th 1699, when the surname spelling is entered as Devas. In France we have such recordings as Pierre Vas and his wife Marie at Conde-sure- -L'Escaut, Nord, on February 8th 1626, Antoine Vasse at Vireux-Molhain, Meurthe-et-Moselle, on May 28th 1658. Curiously in France we cannot find a recording with the 'de' prefix. This suggest that when the original nameholders entered England they were probably asked where they came from. To which they would naturally answer 'de Vars' or perhaps 'de Vass', and this became the surname.
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