Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Munger: Hey Web Site, Yer Doin' It Wrong!

Interesting. This web site just totally fabricated the origins of my last name.

They claim that it is a Bohemian name, referring to "Ungyar," or someone from Hungary. And they may be right about the entire family called "Unger."

But that is a different name. With different origins, and a different crest. Bizarre. Just ripping people off.

The truth, for those seven other Mungers out there who may care, is told here. The name is Saxon, and can be found in records of some cities of what later became the Hanseatic League.

Sharon Turner's remarkable three-volume History of the Anglo-Saxons (1836), quoting an old source from the 11th century, states:

In the Saxon dialogues, the merchant (mancgere) is introduced: "I say that I am useful to the king, and to ealdormen, and to the rich, and to all people. I ascend my ship with my merchandise, and sail over the sea-like places, and sell my things, and buy dear things which are not produced in this land, and I bring them to you here with great danger over the sea; and sometimes I suffer shipwreck, with the loss of all my things, scarcely escaping myself."
"What things do you bring to us?"
"Skins, silks, costly gems, and gold; various garments, pigment, wine, oil, ivory, and orichalcus*, copper, and tin, silver, glass, and suchlike."
"Will you sell your things here as you brought them here?"
"I will not, because what would my labour benefit me? I will sell them dearer here than I bought them there, that I may get some profit, to feed me, my wife, and children."

(pp. 115-6; original in MS. Tib. A 3; * brass)

Later, Munger/Mancgeres settled in County Surrey, south of London. And Nicholas Munger moved to the Guilford Colony, in Connecticut, in 1650 or so.

Above is the actual (and somewhat pathetic, a crow standing on five onions, or at best a hawk standing on five eggs?) coat of arms for the Mancgeres.


Angus said...

That is clearly a pigeon perched on 5 Xanax tablets!

Anonymous said...

I always figured you were descended from a long line of mung bean farmers.