This is a name of ancient French origins, although as a surname it is possibly older in England. It derives from the given name "Pascal", itself a derivation of the pre-Christian "Pascha", which translates as "the Passover". The given name was baptismal for one born on the day of the Feast of the Passover, although later it developed a range of endearment diminutives, of which Passe is an example. More easily recognisable in this role are Pascalin, Pasquelin and Pascali, all of whom mean "little Pas(cal)", or "kin of Pascal". The surname as Passe is armigerous, a Coat of Arms being granted to (de la) Passe of Gascony in circa 1700. The blazon is that of a blue field, with a gold tree between a lion and a talbot counterchanged, a red chief with three knights' spurs. French surname recordings are often later than English equivalents, these include: Nicolas Passe, who married Nicole Tisset at Tournes, Ardennes, on October 10th 1690, and Christine Passe, who married Louis Francois Breton at St. Aignan, Meurthe-et-Moselle, on November 16th 1790. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Passe, which was dated 1275, in the "Hundred Rolls of Norfolk, England, during the reign of King Edward 1, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. 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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