Recorded as Jagiello, Jagiela, and Jagielski, this is a famous and royal Lithuanian and Polish surname inspite of its rather Italian appearance. Dating back to the 14th century, it is one of the royal surnames of Poland, being descended from Wladyshaw Jagiello (1348 - 1434), the King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania, from where the family originated. The Jagiello dynasty ruled the two countries until 1572, and it may be said that this was the high point of Polish and Baltic influence throughout Europe. The surname probably owes something to the pre 7th century German word 'jager' meaning a huntsman. As to the relationship between modern holders of the surname and the former royal family, this can only be decided by genealogical research. The Dictionary of World Surnames suggests that whilst many nameholders probably have descended from the Royal Family, in some cases it may have been adopted to show solidarity with the most glorious period of Polish history.
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