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Surname Maaßen - Meaning and Origin

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Unveiling Genetic Heritage: A Journey Into the Maaßen Surname Through iGENEA DNA Testing

Receiving the results of my iGENEA DNA test was like opening a time capsule into my ancestral lineage. It unveiled an astounding mix of ancient tribes and histories tied to the surname Maaßen, tracing roots from Germanic tribes, British Celtic tribes, and even Norse Vikings. These revelations put forth a compelling narrative of migration, intermarriage, survival, and inheritance, all wrapped within the double helix of my DNA.

B. Maaßen

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Maaßen: What does the surname Maaßen mean?

The surname Maaßen is a variant of the German surname Maass. It means ‘measure’ and refers to someone who holds the responsibility of establishing metrical units. It is believed to have been a job title coined by the medieval guilds or craftsmen and later adopted as a hereditary surname.

The surname has mainly been found in areas of East and North West Germany, and more recently in Saxony and Lower Saxony. It was widely spread during the Middle ages and is estimated to date back to 1224. In ancient documents it was recorded as Maes or Maatsen, and some variations of the name are Massen, Massenbruch, and Maessen.

Originally, the Maaßen family were tenants in the castle of Bülk, Saxony, and it is believed that other bearers of the name are descended from the same line. The Maaßens are known for their influential roles in government, medicine, science, literature, as well as music, fine arts, law and religion.

The family continues to share their name in Europe and other parts of the world, and today many Maaßens are proud to show their commitment to their heritage and are still actively involved in the community.

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Maaßen: Where does the name Maaßen come from?

The last name Maaßen is quite common throughout Germany. According to genealogical records, it is known that the name is of German origin and first surfaced in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern during medieval times. While some families migrated out of the region during the late 19th century, it is estimated that around 3,000 people with the last name Maaßen still live in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern today.

In addition to being found in Germany, the name Maaßen is also found in other parts of Europe, most notably in Austria and the Netherlands. People with the name Maaßen or its variants can also be found in the United States, South Africa, and New Zealand, who are likely to be descendants of the Maaßen family that emigrated from Germany in the 19th and 20th centuries.

The Maaßen family was sometimes referred to as the 'von Maaßen', as many of them held titles of nobility. Historically, the Maaßen family was quite influential and among its members were senior military personnel, noblemen, businessmen, and politicians.

The name Maaßen is still a popular and common surname across Germany today. In recent years, many people with the name Maaßen have gone on to have successful careers in the military, business, and the academic world. One prominent Maaßen is German Federal Intelligence Service (BND) President Ernst Uhrlau, who changed the name from Maaßen to Uhrlau in 2005.

Variations of the surname Maaßen

Maaßen is a German surname derived from the word maßen, which means measure. Variants of this surname include Maasen, Maas (in Dutch) and Massen. In some instances, the letter 'ß' (or 'ss' in some variants) may be found substituted with a double 's' (e.g. Maassen).

In Germany and other German-speaking regions, the surname is mainly found in the areas of Bayern, Sachsen-Anhalt, Thüringen, and Westfalen. It is also found in Prussia and throughout various parts of Europe, such as Denmark, France, Poland and the Netherlands.

Other variants of Maaßen include Masson, Meessen, Maess, Massan and Masin. The surnames, however, are derived from Massen and not Maaßen directly. These can be found in various areas, such as Belgium, France, Germany, and the Netherlands.

The role of the 'ß' as a single letter in German orthography has diminished over time. Nevertheless, the letter is still actively found in this and other German surnames, such as Maaß and Maaßen. This is because, in German, the 'ß' has a special function. It is used to denote a 'long s', which is an extended and more sonorous 's' sound.

Maaßen is also sometimes written with a double 's' instead of a 'ß' (e.g. Maassen). This is mainly due to it being a more easily recognisable spelling since the 'ß' is no longer a common letter in many languages.

In some cases, hypenation is used to break the name into Maa-ßen, which gives emphasis to the ‘ß’ in the surname. This is mainly done in the 17th and 18th century documents, which would be written in the old-style German script.

Famous people with the name Maaßen

  • Hans-Georg Maaßen (born 1961), former president of the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV)
  • Rudolf Maaßen (born 1939), German theologian and ethologist
  • Hans von Maaßen (1883-1958), German politician and general
  • Horst Maaßen (1927-2001), German U-boat commander
  • Ludwig Maaßen (1907-2006), German histologist and botanist
  • Werner Maaßen (born 1933), German geophysicist
  • Claus Maaßen (born 1959), German philologist
  • Frieder Maaßen (1917-2009), German cartoonist
  • Stefan Maaßen (born 1942), German politician
  • Paul Maaßen (1917-2010), German football player

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