Recorded in over seventy spellings and found throughout Europe in forms including Hue, Hugh, Hugo, Hew, the Swisse Huge, the Bavarian Hugg and the French aphetics Gan, Gange, Gon, Gong, Gonge, Gonger, Gunge, the diminutives Hugett, Huelin, Hugonneau, Gangee, Gangey, Gonnet, Gonout, Gonoude, and the Italian Ughini, this is a name which is ultimately of pre 7th century German origins. The name means "heart", and it is perhaps not surprising that given such a meaning the personal name was and remains highly popular. Both as a surname and a first name it was to be found in almost every European country by the 12th century. The surname may be the first of all hereditary recordings to be found in England. This was the country which first adopted both surnames and register recordings as we know them today. These early recordings include such examples as Richard Hue of the city of Worcester, in the year 1275, and John Hugh of the county of Sussex in 1296. In Germany in the year 1402, one Willi Hugo is recorded as being a burger of Ravensburg, whilst in London Racque Hugo, a French Huguenot, was a witness at Threadneedle Street French Church, on March 6th 1639. Other recordings include William Gangey or Gingey at St Olaves church, Southwark, on November 25th 1638, and Elizabeth Gong at St Dunstans Stepney, on March 23rd 1645. The first known recording of the family name is shown to be that of Rogerus Hugo. This was dated 1185, in the rolls of the Knight Templars of England during the reign of King Henry 11nd, 1154 - 1189. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop", often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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