En la antigüedad, no existían los apellidos. Tomemos la Biblia, por ejemplo:
A los personajes del Antiguo y Nuevo Testamento se les conocía por su nombre: Abraham, Moisés, Pedro, Juan, Mateo, Jesús, María y José.

No había tal cosa como Abraham Pérez, Mateo Delgado o José García. (Cuidado: Iscariote no era el apellido del traidor Judas, ni Tadeo el del santo; eran sobrenombres, apodos).

Con el tiempo, las comunidades se poblaban cada vez más y más, y de momento surgían las dudas:
—Llévale este mensaje a Juan.
—¿Cuál Juan? —preguntaba el mensajero.
—Pues Juan, el «del valle» —explicaba para distinguirlo del otro Juan, el «del monte».
En este caso, los apellidos del Valle’ y del Monte, tan comunes hoy en día, surgieron como resultado del lugar donde vivían estas personas.

Estos se llaman «apellidos topónimos», porque la toponimia estudia la procedencia de los nombres propios de un lugar.

En esa misma categoría están los apellidos Arroyo, Canales, Costa, Cuevas, Peña, Prado, Rivera (que hacen referencia a algún accidente geográfico) y Ávila, Burgos, Logroño, Madrid, Toledo (que provienen de una ciudad en España).

Otros apellidos se originan de alguna peculiaridad arquitectónica con la que se relacionaba una persona.

Si tu antepasado vivía cerca de varias torres, o a pasos de unas fuentes, o detrás de una iglesia, o al cruzar un puente, o era dueño de varios palacios, pues ahora entiendes el porqué de los apellidos Torres, Fuentes, Iglesias, Puente y Palacios.

Es posible que hayas tenido algún ancestro que tuviese algo que ver con la flora y la fauna.
Quizás criaba corderos, cosechaba manzanas o tenía una finca de ganado. De ahí los apellidos Cordero, Manzanero y Toro.

Los oficios o profesiones del pasado también han producido muchos de los apellidos de hoy en día.
¿Conoces a algún Labrador, Pastor, Monje, Herrero, Criado o Vaquero? Pues ya sabes a qué se dedicaban sus antepasados durante la Edad Media.

Otra manera de crear apellidos era a base de alguna característica física, o un rasgo de su personalidad o de un estado civil.
Si no era casado, entonces era Soltero; si no era gordo, era Delgado; si no tenía cabello, era Calvo; si su pelo no era castaño, era Rubio; si no era blanco, era Moreno; si tenía buen sentido del humor, era Alegría; si era educado, era Cortés.

Quizás la procedencia más curiosa es la de los apellidos que terminan en -ez, como Rodríguez, Martínez, Jiménez, González, entre otros muchos que abundan entre nosotros los hispanos.

El origen es muy sencillo: -ez significa «hijo de».
Por lo tanto, si tu apellido es González es porque tuviste algún antepasado que era hijo de un Gonzalo. De la misma manera, Rodríguez era hijo de Rodrigo, Martínez de Martín, Jiménez de Jimeno, Sánchez de Sancho, Álvarez de Álvaro, Benítez de Benito, Domínguez de Domingo, Hernández de Hernando, López de Lope, Ramírez de Ramiro, Velázquez de Velasco, y así por el estilo.
Así mismo ocurre en otros idiomas: Johnson es hijo de John en inglés (John-son); MacArthur es hijo de Arthur en escocés; Martini es hijo de Martín en italiano.
Es así como, poco a poco, durante la Edad Media, comienzan a surgir los apellidos.

La finalidad era, pues, diferenciar una persona de la otra.
Con el tiempo, estos apellidos tomaron un carácter hereditario y pasaron de generación en generación con el propósito de identificar no solo personas, sino familias.

Autor: tomado de las RR.SS.

Vía  F/Chardin Mijahuanca Pinzón


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