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[Surname] Freeman
Can anyone tell me the origins of this name and whether or not it is Jewish? I'd very much like to know. Thanks- Sophia
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Freeman can be a Jewish surname, but it is a surname of long standing in England where it identified an individual who had free status, rather than being a serf. The names Franklyn, Frankling and Frankland have the same meaning.
The name was also adopted in Ireland by some families called O Saoraidhe (Seery) and Macantsaor (McAteer, McIntyre) as both these names incorporate the word SAOR, meaning "free".
As a Jewish name the meaning is not clear to me. It may be an englishing of the German Friedmann, "peace man". I'm guessing here, but that name may a substitute for the Hebrew male name Shalom, which means "peace".
Whether or not it's relevant I don't know, but some Spanish Jews bore the status name FRANCO. This meant that they were freed from paying a special tax on Jews, having paid a lump sum.
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