Indicated a person who lived near an abbey or worked in an abbey, from Middle English abbeye
From the name of a town in Derbyshire, derived from Old English meaning "Abba's island".
Denoted a person who lived near a field, derived from Middle English aker
or Middle High German acker
Means "ploughman", derived from Middle English aker
"field" and man
Habitational name for a person from the village of Ainsworth near Manchester, itself from the Old English given name Ægen
From the name of the village of Alsop en la Dale in Derbyshire, England. It means "Ælli's valley" in Old English.
From the name of various English towns, derived from Old English æppel
"apple" and Old Norse býr
From the name of several English towns, meaning "orchard" in Old English (a compound of æppel
"apple" and tun
Probably from an unidentified place name meaning "up tower" in Old English.
Occupational name for one who practiced archery, from Latin arcus
"bow" (via Old French).
Occupational name for a chest maker, from Middle English arc
meaning "chest, coffer" and wyrhta
meaning "maker, craftsman".
Means "hermitage", indicating a person who lived near one, from Middle English ermite
"hermit" and stede
Means "strong arm" from Middle English. Tradition holds that the family is descended from Siward, an 11th-century Earl of Northumbria. Famous bearers of this name include the Americans Louis Armstrong (1901-1971), a jazz musician, and Neil Armstrong (1930-2012), an astronaut who was the first person to walk on the moon.
From the name of a town in Cambridgeshire, originally meaning "Earna's settlement" in Old English (Earna
being a person's nickname meaning "eagle").
From Old English æsc
meaning "ash tree", indicating a person who lived near ash trees.
Denoted a person hailing from one of the many places in England which bear this name. The place name itself is derived from Old English æsc
"ash tree" and leah
From an English place name meaning "ash enclosure" in Old English.
Means "at the way", originally denoting someone who lived close to a road.
Means "dweller at the fortified town" from Middle English at
Indicated a person from the town of Ayr in Scotland. The town was named for the river which flows through it, itself derived from an Indo-European root meaning "water".
From the name of towns in Berwickshire and North Yorkshire. They are derived from Old English ea
"river" or eg
"island" combined with tun
"enclosure, yard, town".
Means "bakery", an occupational name for a baker, from Old English bæchus
literally "bake house".
From various English place names, all derived from Old English bagga
"bag, badger" combined with leah
From Middle English baili
meaning "bailiff", which comes via Old French from Latin baiulus
From a nickname derived from Old English ban
"bones", probably for a thin person.
Occupational name meaning "baker", derived from Middle English bakere
From Middle English bal
, Old English beall
meaning "ball". This was either a nickname for a rotund or bald person, or a topographic name for someone who lived near a ball-shaped feature.
From any of the various places of this name, derived from Old English bean
meaning "bean" and croft
meaning "small enclosed field".
Originally indicated someone who lived near a hillside or a bank of land.
Occupational name for a flag carrier, derived from Old French baniere
meaning "banner", ultimately of Germanic origin.
From Norman French banastre
meaning "basket". This was originally a name for a maker of baskets.
From Middle English bark
meaning "to tan". This was an occupational name for a leather tanner.
Derived from a number of English place names which variously mean "barley hill", "barn hill", "boar clearing" or "barley clearing".
Denoted a person who worked or lived in a barn. The word barn
is derived from Old English bere
"barley" and ærn
Derived from Old English bærnet
meaning "a place cleared by burning".
Indicated a person who lived near a barrier, from Old French barre
Probably derived from a Middle English word meaning "strife", originally given to a quarrelsome person.
From a place name meaning "barley town" in Old English.
From a nickname for a combative person. In some cases it may come from the name of English places called Battle
, so named because they were sites of battles.
From the name of a place in Lancashire, from Old English beos
"bent grass" and leah
From a nickname for a person with a big nose, from Middle English beke
From Old English becca
meaning "pickaxe", an occupational surname.
From a place name meaning "Becca's homestead". The byname Becca
means "pickaxe" in Old English.
From a Middle English version of Old French bel chiere
meaning "beautiful face". It later came to refer to a person who had a cheerful and pleasant temperament.
From Middle English belle
meaning "bell". It originated as a nickname for a person who lived near the town bell, or who had a job as a bell-ringer.
From a place name derived from Old English beonet
"bent grass" and leah
"woodland, clearing". Various towns in England bear this name.
Denoted someone who came from Benton, England, which is derived from Old English beonet
"bent grass" and tun
Derived from a place name which was derived from Old English burh
Derived from Middle English beste
meaning "beast", an occupational name for a keeper of animals or a nickname for someone who acted like a beast. A famous bearer of this surname was soccer legend George Best (1946-2005).
Derived from the name of an English city, meaning "beaver stream" in Old English.
Occupational name for a person who raised or hunted birds.
Means simply "bishop", ultimately from Greek επισκοπος (episkopos)
meaning "overseer". It probably originally referred to a person who served a bishop.
From Old French bis
meaning "drab, dingy", a nickname for someone who looked drab.
Means either "black" (from Old English blæc
) or "pale" (from Old English blac
). It could refer to a person with a pale or a dark complexion, or a person who worked with black dye.
From the name of a city in Lancashire, meaning "black stream" in Old English.
Variant of BLACK
. A famous bearer was the poet and artist William Blake (1757-1827).
From the name of a town in Northamptonshire, itself meaning "Blæcwulf's meadow" in Old English. Blæcwulf
is a byname meaning "black wolf".
Originally indicated someone from the town of Blidworth in Nottinghamshire, which was derived from the Old English byname Blīþa
(meaning "happy, blithe") combined with worð
From a place name meaning "Blocca's homestead". The Old English byname Blocca
is of uncertain origin.
From a nickname for a person with blue eyes or blue clothing.
From any of the many places in England called Bolton, derived from Old English bold
"house" and tun
Occupational name for a peasant farmer, from Middle English bonde
From Middle English boneire
"kind, courteous", derived from Norman French bon aire
From northern Middle English boni
meaning "pretty, attractive".
Originally indicated a person from the town of Bohon, in Manche in France. The town's name is of unknown origin.
Topographic name derived from Middle English both
meaning "hut, stall".
Probably indicated someone from the town of Les Bottereaux in Normandy, itself derived from Old French bot
Occupational name for an archer, derived from Middle English bowe
, Old English boga
From Old French bois
meaning "wood", originally given to someone who lived by or in a wood.
From various locations derived from Old English meaning "broad oak".
Derived from the name of the city of Bradford in West Yorkshire which meant "broad ford" in Old English. This is also the name of other smaller towns in England.
From the name of various places in England meaning "hill covered with broom" in Old English.
Means "brass worker", derived from Old English bræs
From a place name, which derived from Old English meaning "enclosure by a steep path".
From a place name derived from Cornish bre
Originally indicated someone from Brackenrig in Lanarkshire, derived from northern Middle English braken
meaning "bracken" (via Old Norse brækni
) and rigg
meaning "ridge" (via Old Norse hryggr
Originally derived from the name of a hill (or the village nearby) in Somerset, perhaps derived from a Celtic word meaning "hill".
Originally a name given to someone who was a Breton, a person from Brittany.
Originally referred to one who came from a town called Brigham, meaning "homestead by the bridge" in Old English. This is the name of towns in Cumberland and Yorkshire.
From the name of a city in England meaning "the site of the bridge".
From the name of the city of Bristol, originally Brycgstow
in Old English, meaning "the site of the bridge".
Originally given to a person who was a Briton (a Celt of England) or a Breton (an inhabitant of Brittany).
Derived from Old English brocc
meaning "badger", ultimately of Celtic origin.
Denoted a person who lived near a brook, a word derived from Old English broc
Originally a nickname for a person who had brown hair or skin. A notable bearer is Charlie Brown from the 'Peanuts' comic strip by Charles Schulz.
From Old English brun
meaning "brown" and hlaw
meaning "mound, small hill". The name was probably given to a family living on a small hill covered with bracken.
From a nickname for a person who acted like a bull.
Possibly a nickname derived from Middle English bole
Derived from Old French bon cuer
meaning "good heart".
Derived from Middle English burgh
meaning "fortress, fortification, castle". It was brought to Ireland in the 12th century by the Norman invader William FitzAdelm de Burgo.
From the name of various towns in England, typically derived from Old English burna
"stream, spring" and ham
BURNS (1)English, Scottish
Derived from Old English burna
"stream, spring". A famous bearer was the Scottish poet Robert Burns (1759-1796).
From a common English place name, derived from Old English meaning "fortified town".
Originally a name for a person who lived near a prominent bush or thicket.
Occupational name for a butcher, derived from Old French bouchier
Occupational name derived from Norman French butiller
"wine steward", ultimately from Late Latin butticula
"bottle". A famous bearer of this surname is the fictional character Rhett Butler, created by Margaret Mitchell for her novel 'Gone with the Wind' (1936).
From a nickname meaning "thick, stumpy", from Middle English butt
From various English place names derived from Old English ceald
"cold" and well
"spring, stream, well".
From the ecclesiastical usage of canon
, referring to a church official or servant who worked in a clergy house.
Originally a name for someone from Cantrell in Devon, from an unknown first element and Old English hyll
From the name of a city in northern England. The city was originally called by the Romans Luguvalium
meaning "stronghold of LUGUS
". Later the Brythonic element ker
"fort" was appended to the name of the city.
Occupational name for a carter, from Middle English carre
"cart" (of Latin origin) and man
From the occupation, derived from Middle English carpentier
(ultimately from Latin carpentarius
meaning "carriage maker").
Occupational name for a person who operated a cart to transport goods, from Norman French caretier
Occupational surname for a carver, from Middle English kerve
From Middle English castel
meaning "castle", from Late Latin castellum
, originally indicating a person who lived near a castle.
From a place name meaning "cold field", from Old English ceald
"cold" and feld
Occupational name for one who made leggings, derived from Old French chausse
Indicated a person who lived near a causeway, from Old French caucie
From the name of English towns meaning "settlement belonging to CHAD
" in Old English.
Occupational name for one who looked after the inner rooms of a mansion, from Norman French chambrelain
From Old French chambre
"chamber, room", an occupational name for a person who worked in the inner rooms of a mansion.
Occupational name for an administrator, a chancellor, from Norman French chancelier
Occupational surname meaning "candle seller" or "candle maker" in Middle English, ultimately derived from Old French.
Occupational name derived from Old English ceapmann
meaning "merchant, trader".
Occupational name for a hunter, from Middle English chase
Originally indicated a person from the county of Cheshire in England. Cheshire is named for its city CHESTER
From the name of a city in England, derived from Latin castrum
From the English word, probably referring to a person who lived close to a church.
Means "cleric" or "scribe", from Old English clerec
meaning "priest", ultimately from Latin clericus
. A famous bearer was William Clark (1770-1838), an explorer of the west of North America.
Means simply "clay", originally referring to a person who lived near or worked with of clay.
From the name of various places meaning "clay settlement" in Old English.
Derived from the given name CLEMENT
. This was the surname of the author Samuel Clemens (1835-1910), also known as Mark Twain.
Derived from various place names which meant "ford by a cliff" in Old English.
Derived from various place names meaning "settlement by a cliff" in Old English.
Derived from the place name Glympton
meaning "settlement on the River Glyme" in Old English.
From Middle English clos
meaning "enclosure", a topographic name for someone who lived near a courtyard or farmyard.
From a medieval English byname meaning "lump".
Derived from the medieval nickname cok
which meant "rooster, cock". The nickname was commonly added to given names to create diminutives such as Hancock
Originally indicated someone who came from Cockburn, a place in Berwickshire. The place name is derived from Old English cocc
"rooster" and burna
From a place name, itself derived from Old French chalenge
meaning "disputed" and Middle English wode
Possibly from the name of the River Culm in Devon, England. This name is seen in the Domesday book as Culmstoke or Colmstoke.
From Middle English connere
meaning "inspector", an occupational name for an inspector of weights and measures.
From Old French conestable
, ultimately from Latin comes stabuli
meaning "officer of the stable".
Derived from Old English coc
meaning "cook", ultimately from Latin coquus
. It was an occupational name for a cook, a man who sold cooked meats, or a keeper of an eating house.