PAGE English, French
Occupational name meaning "servant, page". It is ultimately derived (via Old French and Italian) from Greek παιδιον (paidion)
meaning "little boy".
Means "pilgrim", ultimately from Latin palma
"palm tree", since pilgrims to the Holy Land often brought back palm fronds as proof of their journey.
From Italian palombo
meaning "pigeon" (also "dogfish"). This form is typical of southern Italy.
PAN (2) Chinese
From Chinese 潘 (pān)
meaning "water in which rice has been rinsed", and also referring to a river that flows into the Han River.
PAREDES Portuguese, Spanish
Denoted a person who lived near a wall, from Portuguese parede
and Spanish pared
meaning "wall", both derived from Latin paries
PARENT English, French
Derived from Old French parent
meaning either "notable" (from Latin pārēre
meaning "to be apparent") or "parent" (from Latin parere
meaning "to produce, to give birth").
PARK (2) English
From Middle English park
, from Latin parricus
, of Germanic origin. This was a name for someone who worked in or lived in a park.
PASTERNAK Polish, Ukrainian, Russian, Yiddish
Means "parsnip" in various Slavic languages, ultimately from Latin pastinaca
. A famous bearer was Boris Pasternak (1890-1960), author of 'Doctor Zhivago'.
PATERNOSTER English, Italian
Occupational name for a maker of rosaries, also called paternosters. They are derived from the Latin phrase pater noster
"our Father", the opening words of the Lord's Prayer.
Means "peacock" in Italian. It was originally a nickname for a proud or haughty person.
From a medieval given name or nickname derived from Latin paganus
meaning "heathen, pagan" (from an earlier sense "rural, rustic"), which was given to children whose baptism had been postponed or adults who were not overly religious.
From Middle English pecok
meaning "peacock". It was originally a nickname for a proud or haughty person.
Originally indicated a dweller by a pointed hill, from Old English peac
"peak". It could also denote a person from the Peak District in Derbyshire, England.
Nickname for a thin person, derived from Old French pel
, Latin palus
meaning "stake, post" (related to English pole
Means "pilgrim, traveller" in Italian, ultimately from Latin peregrinus
PENN (2) English
Occupational name for a person who kept penned animals, from Old English penn
Nickname meaning "penny, coin" from Old English penning
PEREIRA Portuguese, Galician
From Portuguese and Galician pereira
meaning "pear tree", ultimately from Latin pirum
PERRY (1) English
From Old English pirige
meaning "pear tree", a derivative of peru
meaning "pear", itself from Latin pirum
. A famous bearer was Matthew Perry (1794-1858), the American naval officer who opened Japan to the West.
PETIT French, Catalan, English
Means "small, little" derived from Old French and Catalan petit
. It was perhaps used for a short, small person or to denote the younger of two individuals.
From a nickname meaning "priest, cleric" from Old High German pfaffo
, from Latin papa
From Old High German pfenning
meaning "penny, coin". It was used in reference to feudal tax obligations.
Nickname for a person who was a pilgrim, ultimately from Latin peregrinus
Name for a person who lived near a pine tree, from Italian pino
, Latin pinus
PLANK German, English
Means "plank", from Old French, itself from Late Latin planca
. This could have referred to a person who lived by a plank bridge over a stream, someone who was thin, or a carpenter.
From Old French plat
meaning "flat, thin", from Late Latin plattus
, from Greek πλατυς (platys)
meaning "wide, broad, flat". This may have been a nickname or a topographic name for someone who lived near a flat feature.
Nickname for a bald person, from Slovene pleša
meaning "bald patch".
Means "hillock, small hill" in Italian, a derivative of Latin podium
meaning "balcony, platform".
Means "pear tree" in French, originally a nickname for someone who lived close to such a tree.
Means "Pole, person from Poland" in Czech.
From a nickname that originally designated a person who played the part of the pope in a play or pageant. Otherwise the name could be used as a nickname for a man with a solemn, austere, or pious appearance. It is derived from Latin papa
, ultimately from Greek παππας (pappas)
PORRAS Spanish, Catalan
From a nickname meaning "club" in Spanish and Catalan, ultimately from Latin porrum
Occupational name meaning "doorkeeper", ultimately from Old French porte
"door", from Latin porta
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.
PRINZ German, Jewish
Means "prince", used as an ornamental name by Jews or as a nickname for someone who acted in a princely manner.
From a nickname meaning "showy, pompous", derived from an old southern German word meaning "toad".
Means "door, gate", a topographic name for a person who lived near the gates of the town.
From Old French pourcel
"piglet", from Latin porcellus
, a derivative of porcus
"pig". This was a nickname or an occupational name for a swineherd.
Nickname for a quick or agile person, ultimately from Old English cwic
From various Spanish place names derived from quiñóon
meaning "shared piece of land", derived from Latin quinque
QUINTANA Spanish, Catalan
Originally indicated someone who lived on a piece of land where the rent was a fifth of its produce, from Spanish and Catalan quintana
"fifth", from Latin quintus
Originally a name for a dweller on a narrow pass or hillside, from Old English hrace
READ (1) English
Means "red" from Middle English read
, probably denoting a person with red hair or complexion.
Occupational name derived from Middle English reeve
, Old English (ge)refa
meaning "sheriff, prefect, local official".
Means "heron" in German, a nickname for a person with long legs.
REIS German, Jewish
From Middle High German ris
meaning "twig, branch, bush", denoting a person who lived in an overgrown area. As a Jewish name it is ornamental.
REY (1) English, Spanish, French, Catalan
Means "king" in Old French, Spanish and Catalan, ultimately from Latin rex
), perhaps originally denoting someone who acted like a king.
REY (2) English
Means "female roe deer" from Old English ræge
, probably denoting someone of a nervous temperament.
Topographic name derived from Old English rod
meaning "cleared land", or a locational name from any of the locations named with this word.
Means "little river, stream" in Portuguese, ultimately from Latin riparius
From Italian riccio
meaning "curly", a nickname for someone with curly hair. It is ultimately from Latin ericius
Originally denoted a person who lived near a river, from Portuguese rios
"river", ultimately from Latin rivus
From Middle High German riter
meaning "rider, knight", a cognate of RYDER
Means "bank, shore" in Italian, from Latin ripa
, denoting one who lived by a river or a lake.
From Spanish ribera
meaning "bank, shore", from Latin riparius
Denoted a person who lived near a river, from Middle English, from Old French riviere
meaning "river", from Latin riparius
From Middle English and Old French roche
meaning "rock", from Late Latin rocca
, a word that may be of Celtic origin. It indicated a person who lived near a prominent rock, or who came from a town by this name (such as Les Roches in Normandy).
Means "oak wood" from Spanish roble
"oak", ultimately from Latin robur
Originally indicated a person who lived near an oak tree or forest, from Spanish roble
"oak", from Latin robur
Means "red" in Catalan, from Latin rubeus
, originally a nickname for a person with red hair or a red complexion.
Means "red" in Spanish, referring to the colour of the hair or complexion.
From the names of places like Ronco or Ronchi, quite common in northern Italy, derived from ronco
meaning "cleared land, terraced land". It was the surname of Angelo Giuseppe Roncalli (1881-1963), the pope John XXIII.
From Italian places named Ronchi, derived from ronco
meaning "cleared land, terraced land". It is most common in northern and central Italy.
Means "rosary" in Portuguese. This name was often given to people born on the day of the festival of Our Lady of the Rosary.
ROSE (1) English, French, German, Jewish
Means "rose" from Middle English, Old French and Middle High German rose
, all from Latin rosa
. All denote a person of a rosy complexion or a person who lived in an area abundant with roses. As a Jewish surname it is ornamental, from Yiddish רויז (roiz)
Derived from a nickname for a red-haired person, from Italian rosso
, Latin russus
Diminutive form of ROSSI
. A famous bearer was the Italian composer Gioachino Rossini (1792-1868).
ROTH German, Jewish
From Middle High German rot
meaning "red". It was originally a nickname for a person with red hair.
Patronymic derived from Middle English rond
meaning "round, plump", ultimately from Latin rotundus
Diminutive of ROUX
. A famous bearer was the philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778) whose ideas influenced the French Revolution.
Derived from Old French ros
meaning "red", from Latin russus
, a nickname for a red-haired person.
From French roue
meaning "wheel", ultimately from Latin rota
, an occupational name for a wheelwright.
From Chinese 阮 (ruǎn)
, which refers to a type of musical instrument, similar to a lute.
Nickname for a person with red hair, from Latin rubeus
From a Norman French nickname that meant "little red one", perhaps originally describing a person with red hair.
RYBA Czech, Polish
Means "fish" in Czech and Slovak, an occupational name for a fisher.
Occupational name for a mounted warrior, from Old English ridere
Topographic name. It could be a misdivision of the Middle English phrases atter ye
meaning "at the island" or atter eye
meaning "at the river". In some cases it merely indicated a person who lived where rye was grown or worked with rye (from Old English ryge
Derived from Latin salix
meaning "willow tree". The name was originally given to one who lived near a willow tree.
Occupational name for a salt worker or someone who lived bear a salt works, from Spanish salina
"salt works, salt mine", ultimately from Latin sal
From Old English, indicated the original nearer lived on sandy ground.
Means "all saint's day" in Italian, a nickname for one born on that day.
SANTOS Portuguese, Spanish
Means "saint" in Portuguese and Spanish, ultimately from Latin sanctus
. This was a nickname for a pious person.
Occupational name meaning "tailor" in Italian, from Latin sartor
, from sarcire
meaning "to mend".
Occupational name for a cobbler, from Latin sutor
English nickname meaning "wild, uncouth", derived from Old French salvage
meaning "untamed", ultimately from Latin silvaticus
meaning "wild, from the woods".
Occupational name derived from Middle High German smit
"smith, metalworker", a cognate of SMITH
SCHNUR German, Jewish
From Old High German snuor
meaning "rope, cord", an occupational name for a maker of rope.
From Dutch school
, ultimately from Latin schola
meaning "school", indicating a person who worked at or lived near a school.
Means "beer-porter, wine-porter" in German, an occupational name for a carrier of wine or beer barrels.
Means "scholar, student" in German, ultimately from Latin schola
Occupational name derived from Middle High German schultheiße
meaning "mayor, judge".
SCHWARZ German, Jewish
Means "black" in German, from Old High German swarz
. It originally described a person with black hair or a dark complexion.
SCOTT English, Scottish
Originally given to a person from Scotland or a person who spoke Scottish Gaelic.
Occupational name meaning "writer, clerk, scribe" in Old French, derived from Latin scriba
SERGEANT English, French
Occupational name derived from Old French sergent
meaning "servant", ultimately from Latin servire
Occupational name derived from Czech švec
meaning "shoemaker, cobbler".
Means "beautiful, handsome" in Yiddish, from German schön
SHARMA Indian, Hindi, Marathi, Bengali, Assamese, Gujarati, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, Tamil, Nepali
Means "joy, shelter, comfort" in Sanskrit.
Occupational name meaning "shepherd, sheep herder", from Old English sceaphyrde
From a nickname for a person with grey hair, from Old English seolfor
Means "rock" in Czech, indicating that the original bearer lived near a prominent rock.
SKALICKÝ Czech, Slovak
Indicated the original bearer came from a place named Skalice
in the Czech Republic or Slovakia, derived from the Slavic root skala
Occupational name for a locksmith, from Polish ślusarz
, of Germanic origin.
From a nickname for a small person, from Middle English smal
From Middle Dutch smit
"metalworker, blacksmith", a cognate of SMITH
Means "metalworker, blacksmith" from Old English smiþ
, related to smitan
"to smite, to hit". It is the most common surname in most of the English-speaking world. A famous bearer was the Scottish economist Adam Smith (1723-1790).
SMOLAK Polish, Czech
Occupational name for a distiller of pitch, derived from the Slavic word smola
meaning "pitch, resin".
From Old English snel
meaning "fast, quick, nimble".
SOBOL Russian, Ukrainian, Jewish
Occupational name for a fur trader, from the Slavic word soboli
meaning "sable, marten". As a Jewish name it is ornamental.
SOKOL Czech, Jewish
From Czech sokol
meaning "falcon", a nickname or an occupational name for a falconer. As a Jewish name it is ornamental.
SOLER Occitan, Catalan
Denoted a person from any of the numerous places in the area whose names derive from Occitan or Catalan soler
meaning "ground, floor".
SOMMER (1) German, English
Means "summer", from Old High German sumar
or Old English sumor
. This was a nickname for a cheerful person, someone who lived in a sunny spot, or a farmer who had to pay taxes in the summer.
SONG Chinese, Korean
From Chinese 宋 (sòng)
referring to the Song dynasty, which ruled China from 960 to 1279.
From Italian sordo
meaning "deaf", from Latin surdus
Means "worry, care, anxiety" in German, from Old High German sorga
From Hungarian sör
meaning "beer". Originally the name was given to beer brewers.
Means "grove of trees, small forest" in Spanish, ultimately from Latin saltus
From Old English spere
"spear", an occupational name for a hunter or a maker of spears, or a nickname for a thin person.
From a nickname for a big person, derived from Middle English stack
"haystack", of Old Norse origin.
From a nickname derived from Polish stary
STARK English, German
From a nickname meaning "strong, rigid", from Old English stearc
or Old High German stark
From Middle English sterre
meaning "star". This was usually a nickname, but it could also occasionally be a sign name from the name of an inn called the Star.
STEIN German, Jewish
From Old High German stein
meaning "stone". It might indicate the original bearer lived near a prominent stone or worked as a stonecutter. As a Jewish name it is ornamental.
Name for a dweller by a stump of a large tree, from Middle Low German stubbe
Occupational name for an administrative official of an estate or steward, from Old English stig
"house" and weard
"guard". The Stewart family (sometimes spelled Stuart
) held the Scottish crown for several centuries. One of the most famous members of the Stewart family was Mary, Queen of Scots.
Name for a person who lived near a prominent stone or worked with stone, derived from Old English stan
STRAND Norwegian, Swedish, Danish
From Old Norse strǫnd
meaning "beach, sea shore". It was originally given to someone who lived on or near the sea.
Derived from Middle English strange
meaning "foreign", ultimately from Latin extraneus