This surname, widely recorded in German Church Registers from the late 16th Century, is an interesting example of that sizeable group of early European surnames that were gradually created from the habitual use of nicknames. These nicknames were given with reference to a variety of personal characteristics, such as physical attributes or peculiarities, and to habits of dress and occupation. The derivation in this instance is from the Old High German "fuss", foot, with the diminutive suffix "en", as a nickname this originally denoted someone with particularly small feet. On August 15th 1629, Goetzen Fussen and Greitgen Gebelen were married in Bracht Kempen, Rheinland, Germany, and on January 24th 1631, Ruthger Fussen, an infant, was christened in Heppendorf, Rheinland. Variations on the surname appearing in English Church Registers include Thomas Fusen, christened in Bearsted, Kent, on April 12th 1674, and Emily Fuzzen, who married Robert Fergusson at St. Paul's, Covent Garden, Westminster, London, on July 10th 1835. The Coat of Arms most associated with the name is a shield divided per fess azure and gold with a human foot proper in the upper half, the Crest being an azure demi-wing charged with a foot. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Henry Fussen, which was dated February 5th 1598, marriage to Ailche Petters, at Niederdresselndorf, Westfalen, Germany, during the reign of Rudolf 11, Habsburg 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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