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Type Surname (from given name & from location)

Meaning & History

Scottish and northern English from the medieval personal name Will, a short form of William, or from some other medieval personal names with this first element, for example Wilbert or Willard.
English topographic name for someone who lived by a spring or stream, Middle English wille (from wiell(a)), West Saxon form of Old English well(a) ‘spring’. The surname is found predominantly in the south and southwestern parts of the country.
German from a short form of any of the various Germanic personal names beginning with wil- ‘will’, ‘desire’.
Added 6/16/2011 by katiekate
Edited 10/9/2016 by LMS, Kate and katiekate