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Re: Freeman
It can be Jewish, but it's a an English surname from way back.
My theory of Freeman as a Jewish surname is that it was originally Friedmann which became Freeman in the English-speaking world. Friedmann literally means "peace-man", which itself may be a stand-in for the Hebrew Shalom, which was a male personal name meaning (all together!) "peace". However, there is also a Jewish surname Frei, or Frey, which means "free", so, what price theories?
As an English surname Freeman meant what it says, the bearer was a free man and not a serf. Franklin is another surname with the same meaning.
Just to complicate matters the Irish took a liking to the name and used it as an English language version of Ó Saoraidhe (also Seery) and Mac an tsaor (also Macateer, Macintyre). Note that both names incorporate the word saor, which is Irish for "free".I bet you wish you'd never asked.
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I forgot to mention, Ashkenazi.
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