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Type Surname
Usage English

Meaning & History

From the old Teutonic word 'lahtro' which is to do with a place that animals bear their young. This was modifed in several dialects to be 'lahtre', 'lattr', 'lauchter' and 'lawchter'.

There were many variant spellings of the word throughout England, although the 'Larter' variant appears to be common to East Anglia, specifically Norfolk and Suffolk. Older variations of spelling commonly include 'Laughter' and 'Lawter'.

It is also likely that the word came to indicate an odd number of something, and was later given to a man who had thirteen children.

Finally, links have been made between the place name 'Lartington' (in County Durham) and the name. This originally meant 'the tun of Lyrti's people'. 'Lyrti' is probably a derivative of the name 'Lorta', and both of these came from the Old English 'belyrtan', meaning to cheat. Thus, the name means 'he who cheats', or 'trickster'.
Added 3/24/2006 by anonymous
Edited 12/21/2014 by Beautiful Victory