Usage German (East Prussian)
Other Forms FormsPancras,
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Meaning & History
The name originated in Holland, as a surname chosen in 1811 when Napoleon insisted that all Dutch people have permanent surnames passed down to children. This particular family chose the name of a venerated saint - Saint Pancras, the patron saint of children. Pancras was the name of a 16 year old boy who converted to Christianity in ancient Rome, refused to recant and was beheaded in 304 BC, just 9 years before Christianity was legalized by Constantine. The name does have a Greek element to it as well, as the meaning of the name in Greek is 'all-powerful', one of the attributes of God. It was not uncommon for Christian parents at the time to name their children an attribute of God.