This unusual and interesting surname with variant forms Pollastro, Pollastrino, Pollastrini and Pollastrella, derives from the Italian "Pollastro", a cockerel, and was originally given as a nickname to one though to bear a fancied resemblance to the bird. Surnames derived from given names and from nicknames are the most widespread surname type in Italy and the "i" ending is characteristic or northern Italy, whereas a final "o" is more widespread in southern states. Italian recordings include the marriage of Girolamo Pollastro and Anastasia Farian on July 29th 1820 in Caserta, and the baptism of Guiseppina Pollastrini in Gragnano, Lucca, on November 23rd 1878. A coat of Arms granted to a Pollastron family resident in the south of France depicts a black lion rampant on a silver field. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Polastron, Langudeoc, (Southern France), which was dated circa 1680 - Rietstap's Armorial General, during the reign of King Leopold 1, known as "Holy Roman Emperor", 1658 - 1705. 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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