This interesting name is of Old Germanic origin, specifically from Bavaria and is an occupational surname for a cooper, a maker and repairer of wooden vessels such as barrels, tubs, buckets, casks and vats. The prevalence of the name and its equivalents and variations throughout Europe indicates that this was one of the chief specialist trades in the Middle Ages. The surname "Schaffler" is an agent derivative of "Schaffl", a diminutive of the southern German dialect term "Schaff", meaning tub, butt. There are a number of variations in the modern idiom: Scheffler, Schaffler, Schoffler, Schaffel, Scheffel and Schoffel and the Dutch van Schafflaer. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Caspar Schefler (baptism), which was dated January 30th 1555, Windsheim, Bayern, Germany, during the reign of King Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, 1519 - 1558. 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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