This ancient surname is pure German, and as such is only of the earliest recorded in that country. It is occupational, translating as 'the huntsman' and as such derives from the pre 10th century High German 'Jeger' which means literally 'to chase or to hunt'. The coat of arms, perhaps not surprisingly, has the blazon of a silver hunting horn on a black field, and as such would have been unmistakeable to opponents whether on the battlefield or in the tournament. The surname has a long and honourable history in Europe, and is found in most countries, in the spelling form as 'Jaegar' is in fact believed to be of Danish origins, but if so it is in Germany where it has wons its laurels. Examples of the surname recording include Paulus Jeger, who married Margarethe Vanus at Neckarkries in the Privince of Wuertt on August 12th 1576, and Paul Jeger, who married Dorothea Wagner at Chemitz, province of Sachsen, on October 30th 1610. Later recordings include Paul Jaegar who married Anne Grossehausers at Mittlefranken, Bayern on December 10th 1694, and Rodalphus Jaeger who married Catarina Guess at Kirchdaun, Provine of Rheinland on January 20th 1700. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Berchtand Jager, which was dated 1280, in the records of Burgtal, in the Tirrol, during the reign of Emperor Rudolf 1, of Hapsburg, 1273 - 1291. 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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