With a few exception from an earlier age, double barrelled surnames, were first created in Europe during the 18th century, a period known as the "Age of Romance". The object was to show that the parties were so much in love, that neither claimed an advantage over the other. Later in Victorian times, the reasons became more pragmatic.The son of a noble, but impoverished family, might have wished to improve his fortunes by marrying the daughter of a rich merchant or one of the new wealthy manufacturing middle class. The merchant, as the price of his agreement, could insist on the retention of his surname. By creating a double-barrelled name, all parties were usually satisfied. With double-barrelled surnames, whilst the individual elements have their meanings the new form, does not. In this case "Franz" is one of the oldest forms of the pre medieval Francis, and is closely associated with St Francis of Assisi. Schoninger is a medieval locational surname, and describes a member (-er) of the people (-ing) from a place called "Schoen" in Germany. "Schoen", in this context, means the beautiful place. The earliest recording of Schoninger is probably that of Bertrand Schoning of Hamelin, Germany, in the year 1426. The Coat of Arms has the blazon of a red stag emerging from a green forest, against a white background. The first recorded spelling of the Franz surname is believed to be that of Hermann Francz, which was dated 1385, in the charters of Ruppentrod, in the state of Hessian, during the reign of Emperor Wencelas, of the Holy Roman (German) Empire, 1378 - 1400.
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