Recorded in the spellings of de Zamora, Zamora, and Zamorano, this is a Spanish surname. It originates from the city of Zamora in North west Spain. The name derives from the Arabic 'azemur' meaning 'the wild olives', a reminder of the period around the 10th century when Spain, or a large part of it, was occupied by Moorish invaders from Morocco. Locational surnames were given either to the original land owners of the estate or to people who for whatever reason, left their former homes and moved elsewhere. An easy form of identification was then, and remains so today, to call them by the name of their original home. Sometimes this was a country, but often as in this case, a major town or city. Early examples of the surname recording taken from authentic civil and religious registers include Manuela de Zamora at Nuestra Senora de la Antigua, Valladolid, Spain, on August 16th 1572, whilst the surname was also an early entry in California. According to the registers, on January 1st 1766 Maria Rita Zamora married Andres Bermudez at Presidio de Santa Cruz, Tuolumne, whilst on August 14th 1847, Maria de Guadalope Zamorano married Henry Dalton. Both these recordings pre-date the time when California became a state within the USA. The coat of arms has the blazon of a red field charged with a triple tower proper, and a semee of gold knights spurs on a blue border. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Mateo de Zamora, which was dated January 31st 1563, christened at Nuestra Senora de la Antigua, Valladolid, Spain, during the reign of King Phillip 11 of Spain, Emperor of Mexico, 1556 - 1598. 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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