This unusual and interesting name, recorded in such varied spellings as Manuely, Manuaud, Manes and Emanulsson, as examples, is biblical in origin, but regarded as French christian, and Jewish, in its many modern surname forms. It derives from the ancient Hebrew given name "Imanuel", which means "God is with us". This was the name given to the promised Messiah by the Prophet Isaiah in the Olde Testament, and was first used as a personal name by the Greeks in the form "Manuel". In Europe the name was first associated wiuth a 3rd century martyr, and achieved some popularity, although it was generally quite rare until the 12th century, and the famous crusades of the period.Crusaders returning from the Holy Land, often called their children by biblical and religious names to commorate the fathers "pilgrimage", and this is one of the many names used. The first name has long been associated with the puritan or dissenter protestants, and was still being used as a personal name in Cornwall up into the 19th Century. Early examples of the surname recordings include John Manuell, who died at St Columb Major, Cornwall, in 1609, and the marriage of John Emanuel and Hester Hanning at St. Olave's Church in Southwark on the 28th July 1775. The first recorded spelling of the family name anywhere in the world, is believed to be that of Roger Emaygne in the rolls of the assize court, Colchester, Essex, England, in the year 1352. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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