Surnames Starting with P

Poppins Literature
Used by P. L. Travers for the magical nanny in her Mary Poppins series of books, first published in 1934. It is not known how Travers devised the name. She may have had the English words pop or poppet (meaning "young woman") in mind.
Porcher English, French
Means "swineherd" from Old French and Middle English porchier, from Latin porcus "pig".
Porra Catalan
Variant of Porras.
Porras Spanish, Catalan
From a nickname meaning "club" in Spanish and Catalan, ultimately from Latin porrum meaning "leek".
Porsche German
Derived from the given name Boris.
Portelli Italian
Diminutive form of Porto.
Porter English
Occupational name meaning "doorkeeper", ultimately from Old French porte "door", from Latin porta.
Portner Low German
Low German cognate of Porter.
Porto Italian
Designated a person who lived near a harbour, from Italian porto, Latin portus.
Portoghese Italian
Means "Portuguese" in Italian.
Pospíšil Czech
Nickname for a person in a hurry, from Czech pospíšit "hurry".
Post Dutch, German, English
Indicated a person who lived near a post, ultimately from Latin postis.
Potenza Italian
From the name of the southern Italian city of Potenza, called Potentia in Latin, meaning "power, force".
Potočnik Slovene
From Slovene potok meaning "stream, brook".
Potter English
Occupational name for a potter, one who makes earthen vessels. This surname was used by J. K. Rowling for the hero in her Harry Potter series of books, first released in 1997.
Pottinger English
Occupational name, either for an apothecary, from Old French potecaire, or a seller of stew, from Old French potagier.
Poulin French
Derived from Old French poule meaning "chicken". It was most likely used to denote a person who raised or sold poultry.
Poulsen Danish
Means "son of Poul".
Pound English
Occupational name for a person who kept animals, from Old English pund "animal enclosure".
Powell Welsh
Derived from Welsh ap Hywel meaning "son of Hywel".
Power 1 English, Irish
From Old French Poier, indicating a person who came from the town of Poix in Picardy, France.
Power 2 English
From Middle English povre meaning "poor", via Old French from Latin pauper. It could have been a nickname for someone who had no money or a miser.
Pozzi Italian
From Italian pozzo meaning "well, pit", derived from Latin puteus.
Pratt English
From Old English prætt meaning "trick, prank". This was a nickname for a trickster.
Pražak Czech
Means "from Prague" in Czech.
Prescott English
From the name of various English places meaning "priest's cottage" in Old English.
Presley English
Variant of Priestley. This name was borne by musician Elvis Presley (1935-1977).
Preston English
Originally derived from various place names meaning "priest town" in Old English.
Pretorius Southern African, Afrikaans
From Latin praetor meaning "leader". This name was adopted in the 17th century by Wesselius Praetorius as a Latin translation of his previous surname Schulte. It is now common in South Africa.
Price Welsh
Derived from Welsh ap Rhys, which means "son of Rhys".
Priddy Welsh
From Welsh prydudd meaning "bard".
Priede Latvian
Means "pine tree" in Latvian.
Priestley English
From a place name meaning "priest clearing", from Old English preost and leah.
Prieto Spanish
From a nickname meaning "dark" in Spanish, referring to a person with dark hair or skin.
Prifti Albanian
From Albanian prift meaning "priest".
Prinsen Dutch
Means "son of the prince", the term prince would have denoted someone who acted in a regal manner.
Prinz German, Jewish
Means "prince", used as an ornamental name by Jews or as a nickname for someone who acted in a princely manner.
Pritchard Welsh
From Welsh ap Richard meaning "son of Richard".
Probert Welsh
Derived from Welsh ap Robert, which means "son of Robert".
Procházka Czech
Means "walk, wander, stroll" in Czech. This was an occupational name for a travelling tradesman.
Profeta Italian
From Italian profeta meaning "prophet". It probably came from a nickname indicating a person who wanted to predict the future. It is typical of southern Italy.
Prohászka Hungarian
Hungarian form of Procházka.
Prosdocimi Italian
From the given name Prosdocimo, Italian form of Prosdocimus.
Protz German
From a nickname meaning "showy, pompous", derived from an old southern German word meaning "toad".
Proudfoot English
Nickname for a person with a proud step.
Proulx French
Derived from Old French preu meaning "valiant, brave".
Provenza Italian
From the name of the Provence region of southern France (in Italian Provenza). It is derived from Latin provincia "province", a territorial division.
Provenzano Italian
Variant of Provenza typical of southern Italy, namely Sicily and Calabria.
Prunty Irish
From Irish Ó Proinntigh meaning "descendant of Proinnteach", a given name probably derived from Irish bronntach meaning "generous".
Pryce Welsh
Variant of Price.
Pryor English
Originally belonged to one who was a prior (a religious official), or one who worked for a prior.
Puerta Spanish
Means "door, gate", a topographic name for a person who lived near the gates of the town.
Puga Galician
Means "thorn, prickle" in Galician.
Pugh Welsh
Derived from Welsh ap Hugh meaning "son of Hugh".
Pugliese Italian
From an adjectival derivative of Puglia, from Latin Apulia, a region of southeast Italy containing the boot heel and some of the coastline of the Adriatic Sea. It is a regional name for someone from that region.
Puig Catalan
Catalan cognate of Poggio.
Pulkrábek Czech
Derived from the medieval status name purkrabí meaning "burgrave". It is derived from German Burggraf meaning "castle count".
Purcell English
From Old French pourcel "piglet", from Latin porcellus, a derivative of porcus "pig". This was a nickname or an occupational name for a swineherd.
Puskás Hungarian
Occupational name for a gunsmith or cannon maker, from Hungarian puska meaning "gun" (from German, itself from Latin buxis "box").
Pusztai Hungarian
From Hungarian puszta meaning "plain, steppe". The name was given to someone living on a plain.
Putin Russian
From Russian путь (put) meaning "road, path". This surname is borne by the Russian president Vladimir Putin (1952-).
Putnam English
From Puttenham, the name of towns in Hertfordshire and Surrey in England, which mean "Putta's homestead".