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Subject: Re: where did they come from?
Author: Sean Foglai   (guest)
Date: June 4, 2005 at 6:30:13 PM
Reply to: where did they come from? by Any and all surnames
Fairly simple really ...Europe, with an ever increasing population at the end of the first century had a relatively limited pool of names to draw from (because everybody wanted to have an association with Christianity - hence a "christian name"). Christian names were to some extent limited. The Europeans began to separate two men with the name of John or two James by either connecting them to a relative, often the father, or to their occupation or to where they came from. Also, in some cases they may have used a physical or personality trait. Thus, John with the red hair became "John Redd" and John with the black hair became John Black. Their sons, quite plausibly named after their fathers may have become Johnsons ...or some other variation until most families finally standardized their names ... just as a note, spellings continued to vary up close to quite modern times ....
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