This surname can be derived from a given name (thus making it a patronymic surname) as well as from a nickname (thus making it a descriptive surname). In the case of a patronymic surname, the surname is derived from the medieval masculine given name Ferrando
, which was in use in both Italy and Spain during the Middle Ages. It was a variant form of the given name Fernando
in both countries, which was the Spanish form of Ferdinand
and Italian contracted form of Ferdinando
. Some sources state that aside from this particular derivation, (there where instances where) the name Ferrando could also be directly derived from the French given name Ferrand
(also found spelled as Ferrant
), which would then essentially make Ferrando both an italianization and hispanicization of a French name. The French name itself was a variant form of the given name Fernand
, which was a contraction of Ferdinand and thus essentially a cognate of the aforementioned Fernando.
In the case of a descriptive surname, the surname Ferrando is a variant form of the surname Ferrante
, which in several cases was derived from medieval Italian ferrante
, which either meant "iron grey" or was simply the name for a greyish-brown (or reddish grey) colour that was similar to the colour of rusted iron. The word, which is ultimately derived from Latin ferrum
"iron", had originally come into being as a way to describe a particular colour of a horse's coat. But in the case (and context) of a surname, ferrante
is more likely to refer to the hair colour of the original bearer of the surname. It should be noted that the connection with horses still remains in the modern Italian definition of the word, though: in this day and age, ferrante
is the present participle of the Italian verb ferrare
meaning "to shoe a horse".
Lastly, a known bearer of the Ferrando surname is the Italian politician Marco Ferrando (b. 1954).