This very unusual surname is a diminutive of Mas, which is of Provencal and Catalan origin, and is from a topographical name for someone who lived in an isolated dwelling in the country, rather than in a village, derived from the Old Provencal, and Catalan "mas", farm (stead), from the Late Latin "mansum, mansus". Provencal is the traditional language of southern France, more specifically of south eastern France, which developed from the medieval "langue d'oc". Provencal is linguistically close to Catalan, which is the language of north-east Spain and the Balearic islands, and the two languages often have similar surname forms. The modern diminutives include: Mazin, Maset, Masot, Mazet, Mazot, Mazel and Mazeau. The earliest recording of the name was that of the christening of Quaterell Mas, on September 10th 1512 at Santa Maria Parish, Mataro, Barcelona, Spain; however, the diminutive Mazin is very rare in Spain, and it is well recorded in France. The christening of Nicolas, son of Nicolas Mazin and Jeanne Namer, was recorded on July 28th 1726, at Ardennes, Signy-L'Abbaye, France. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Suzanna Mazon, which was dated July 12th 1616, christened at All Hallows The Less, London, during the reign of King James 1 of England and V1 of Scotland, 1603 - 1625. 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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