Historiography

Loewen Family History

This surname of LOEWEN was a German nickname for a brave or regal person, and was originally derived from the German word 'lowe' meaning lion. Surnames having a derivation from nicknames form the broadest and most miscellaneous class of surnames, encompassing many different types of origin. The most typical classes refer adjectivally to the general physical aspect of the person concerned, or to his character. Many nicknames refer to a man's size or height, while others make reference to a favoured article of clothing or style of dress. Many surnames derived from the names of animals and birds. In the Middle Ages ideas were held about the characters of other living creatures, based on observation, and these associations were reflected and reinforced by large bodies of folk tales featuring animals behaving as humans. Occasionally the name was used as a locational name, denoting one who lived at a house distinguished by the sign of a lion. The names of habitation are derived from pre-existing names denoting towns, villages, farmsteads or other named habitations. Other classes of local names include those derived from the names of rivers, individual houses with signs on them, regions and in fact whole countries. As a general rule, the further someone travelled from his place of origin, the broader the designation. Someone who stayed at home might be known by the name of his farm or locality in the parish; someone who moved to another town might be known by the name of his village; while someone who moved to another county could acquire the name of the county or region from which he originated. The first hereditary surnames on German soil are found in the second half of the 12th century, slightly later than in England and France. However, it was not until the 16th century that they became stabilized. The practice of adopting hereditary surnames began in the southern areas of Germany, and gradually spread northwards during the Middle Ages. coatofarms The shield of the LOEWEN Coat of Arms is quartered; quarters one and four are black with a gold lion in each, and each lion is crowned with gold. Quarters two and three are silver with a red diagonal band, each with two roses. Above the shield and helmet is the crest described as the “lion issuing: Holding a silver sword,
garnished gold.”

No motto was recorded for the LOEWEN Coat of Arms. The documentation for the LOEWEN Coat of Arms design can be found in Rietstap Armorial General

  small dots = gold
  white = silver
  horizontal lines = blue
  vertical lines = red
  horizontal and vertical lines or black =  
  black
  angle top left to bottom right lines= green
  angle top right to bottom left lines = purple
  vertical broken lines = flesh color
  vertical and angle top right to bottom left
  lines = blood color

In later crests, natural colors were used for some of the pictures, i.e. a sea or sky would be blue, trees/plants would be green etc.