English Surnames

English names are used in English-speaking countries. See also about English names.
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HAYWARD English
Occupational name for a person who protected an enclosed forest, from Old English hæg "enclosure, fence" and weard "guard".
HAYWOOD English
From various place names meaning "fenced wood" in Old English.
HEAD English
From Middle English hed meaning "head", from Old English heafod. It may have referred to a person who had a peculiar head, who lived near the head of a river or valley, or who served as the village headman.
HEADLEY English
From place names meaning "heather clearing" in Old English.
HEATH English
Originally belonged to a person who was a dweller on the heath or open land.
HENDRY Scottish, English
Derived from the given name HENRY.
HENRY English
Derived from the given name HENRY.
HENRYSON English
Means "son of HENRY". A bearer of this surname was the poet Robert Henryson (1425-1500).
HENSON English
Means "son of Henne", a medieval diminutive of HENRY.
HEPBURN English, Scottish
From northern English place names meaning "high burial mound" in Old English. It was borne by Mary Queen of Scot's infamous third husband, James Hepburn, Earl of Bothwall. Other famous bearers include the actresses Katharine Hepburn (1907-2003) and Audrey Hepburn (1929-1993).
HERBERT English, German, French
Derived from the male given name HERBERT.
HERBERTSON English
Means "son of HERBERT".
HERMAN English, Dutch
From the given name HERMAN.
HERMANSON English
Means "son of HERMAN".
HERRIOT English
From an Old French diminutive of the given name HERRY.
HERSHEY English
Originally denoted a person from Hercé in Normandy.
HEWITT English
Derived from a diminutive of the given name HUGH.
HEXT English
From a nickname meaning "tallest" in Middle English. It is most common in the southwest of England in the county of Devon.
HIBBERT English
Derived from the given name HILBERT.
HICKS English
Derived from the medieval given name Hicke, a diminutive of RICHARD.
HIGHTOWER English
Possibly a variant of HAYTER.
HILL English
Originally given to a person who lived on or near a hill, derived from Old English hyll.
HILLAM English
From English places by this name, derived from Old English hyll meaning "hill".
HILTON English
From various English place names derived from Old English hyll "hill" and tun "enclosure, town". Famous bearers of this name include the Hilton family of hotel heirs.
HOBBES English
Derived from the medieval given name HOB. A famous bearer of this name was British political philosopher Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679), the author of 'Leviathan'.
HOBBS English
Derived from the medieval given name HOB.
HOBSON English
Means "son of HOB".
HODGES English
Patronymic of Hodge, a medieval diminutive of ROGER.
HODSON English
Means "son of Hodge", a medieval diminutive of ROGER.
HOGGARD English
Occupational name meaning "pig herder", from Old English hogg "hog" and hierde "herdsman, guardian".
HOLLAND (1) English
From various English places of this name, derived from Old English hoh "point of land, heel" and land "land".
HOLLAND (2) Dutch, German, English
Indicated a person from the Dutch province of HOLLAND (1).
HOLLINS English
Referred to someone living by a group of holly trees, from Old English holegn.
HOLME English, Scottish
Referred either to someone living by a small island (northern Middle English holm, from Old Norse holmr) or near a holly tree (Middle English holm, from Old English holegn).
HOLMES English, Scottish
Variant of HOLME. A famous fictional bearer was Sherlock Holmes, a detective in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's mystery stories beginning in 1887.
HOLT English, Dutch, Danish, Norwegian
From Old English, Old Dutch and Old Norse holt meaning "forest".
HOMEWOOD English
From various place names derived from Old English ham meaning "home" and wudu meaning "wood".
HONEYCUTT English
Derived from the name of the English town of Hunnacott, derived from Old English hunig "honey" or the given name Huna combined with cot "cottage".
HONEYSETT English
Possibly a variant of HONEYCUTT.
HOOKER English
Originally applied to one who lived near a river bend or corner of some natural feature, from Old English hoc "angle, hook".
HOOPER English
Occupational name for someone who put the metal hoops around wooden barrels.
HOPE English
Derived from Middle English hop meaning "small valley".
HOPKINS English
Patronymic formed from a diminutive of HOB.
HOPPER English
Occupational name for an acrobat or a nickname for someone who was nervous or restless. A famous bearer was the American actor Dennis Hopper (1936-2010).
HOPSON English
Variant of HOBSON.
HORN English, German, Norwegian, Danish
From the Germanic word horn meaning "horn". This was an occupational name for one who carved objects out of horn or who played a horn, or a person who lived near a horn-shaped geographical feature, such as a mountain or a bend in a river.
HORNE English
Variant of HORN.
HORSFALL English
From a minor place in Yorkshire derived from Old English hors "horse" and fall "clearing".
HORTON English
From the names of various places in England which are derived from Old English horh "dirt, mud" and tun "enclosure, yard, town".
HOUSE English
Referred to a person who lived or worked in a house, as opposed to a smaller hut.
HOWARD (1) English
Derived from the given name HUGHARD or HÁVARÐR.
HOWARD (2) English
Occupational name meaning "ewe herder", from Old English eowu "ewe" and hierde "herdsman, guardian".
HOWE English
Name for one who lived on a hill, from Middle English how "hill" (of Norse origin).
HOWSE English
Variant of HOWE.
HUDDLESON English
Means "son of Hudel", a diminutive of HUDDE.
HUDDLESTON English
From the name of a town in the Yorkshire region of England, which means "Hudel's town" in Old English.
HUDNALL English
From various English place names, derived from the Old English given name Huda combined with halh "nook, recess".
HUDSON English
Means "son of HUDDE".
HUFF English
Means "spur of a hill", from Old English hoh.
HUGHES (1) English
Patronymic of the given name HUGH.
HULL English
Variant of HILL.
HUME Scottish, English
Variant of HOLME. A famous bearer was the philosopher David Hume (1711-1776).
HUMPHREY English
Derived from the given name HUMPHREY.
HUNNISETT English
Possibly a variant of HONEYCUTT.
HUNT English
Variant of HUNTER.
HUNTER English, Scottish
Occupational name which referred to someone who hunted for a living, from Old English hunta.
HURST English
Originally a name for a person who lived near a thicket of trees, from Old English hyrst "thicket".
HUTSON English
Variant of HUDSON.
HUXLEY English
From the name of a town in Cheshire. The final element is Old English leah "woodland, clearing", while the first element might be hux "insult, scorn". A famous bearer was the British author Aldous Huxley (1894-1963).
HUXTABLE English
Derived from the name of an English place meaning "hook post", from Old English hoc "hook" and stapol "post".
HYLAND (1) English
Topographic name meaning "high land", from Old English heah and land.
IBBOT English
Variant of IBBOTT.
IBBOTT English
Matronymic surname derived from the medieval name Ibota, a diminutive of ISABEL.
IKIN English
Derived from a diminutive of the medieval given name IDA.
ILBERT English
Derived from a Norman French form of the Germanic given name HILDIBERHT.
INGHAM English
From the name of an English town, of Old English origin meaning "INGA's homestead".
INGRAM English
Derived from the Norman French given name ENGUERRAND.
IRVIN English
Variant of IRVING or IRWIN.
IRVING Scottish, English
Originally derived from a Scottish place name (in North Ayrshire) meaning "green water".
IRWIN English
Derived from the Old English given name EOFORWINE.
ISAACSON English
Means "son of ISAAC".
IVERS English, Irish
Patronymic derived from the given name IVOR.
JACK English, Scottish
From the given name JACK.
JACKMAN English
Means "servant of JACK".
JACKSON English
Means "son of JACK". Famous bearers of this name are the American president Andrew Jackson (1767-1845) and the singer Michael Jackson (1958-2009).
JACOBS English, Dutch
Derived from the given name JACOB.
JACOBSON English
Means "son of JACOB".
JAKEMAN English
Means "servant of JACK".
JAMES English
Derived from the given name JAMES.
JAMESON English
Means "son of JAMES".
JAMISON English
Means "son of JAMES".
JARDINE English, Scottish
Means "garden", denoting someone who worked as a gardener.
JARVIS English
Derived from the given name GERVAIS.
JEANES (1) English
Derived from the given name Jan, a medieval English form of JOHN.
JEANES (2) English
Originally denoted a person who came from Genoa, Italy.
JEFFERS English
Patronymic from the given name JEFFREY. A famous bearer was poet Robinson Jeffers (1887-1962).
JEFFERSON English
Means "son of JEFFREY". A famous bearer was American president Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826).
JEFFERY English
Derived from the given name JEFFREY.
JEFFRIES English
Patronymic from the given name JEFFREY.
JEKYLL English
Derived from the Breton given name JUDICAËL. This name was used by Robert Louis Stevenson for the character of Dr Henry Jekyll in the book 'Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde' (1886).
JENKINS English
From the given name Jenkin, a diminutive of Jen, itself a Middle English form of JOHN.
JENNINGS English
From the given name Jenyn, a diminutive of Jen, itself a Middle English form of JOHN.
JEPSON English
Means "son of JEP".
JERNIGAN English
Possibly derived from the old Breton name Iarnogon meaning "iron famous".
JEROME English
Derived from the given name JEROME. A famous bearer of this surname was the American-born Jennie Jerome (1854-1921), Lady Randolph Churchill, mother of Sir Winston Churchill.
JERVIS English
Variant of JARVIS.
JEWEL English
Variant of JEWELL.
JEWELL English
Derived from the Breton given name JUDICAËL.
JINKS English
Means "son of Jenk", a short form of Jenkin, a diminutive of Jen, itself a Middle English form of JOHN.
JOHNS English
Derived from the given name JOHN.
JOHNSON English
Means "son of JOHN". Famous bearers include American presidents Andrew Johnson (1808-1875) and Lyndon B. Johnson (1908-1973).
JOINER English
Occupational name for a carpenter (that is, a person who joins wood together to make furniture).
JONES English, Welsh
Derived from the given name Jon, a medieval variant of JOHN.
JORDAN (1) English, French
Derived from the given name JORDAN.
JOSEPH English
Derived from the given name JOSEPH.
JOSEPHS English
Derived from the given name JOSEPH.
JOSEPHSON English
Means "son of JOSEPH".
JOYNER English
Variant of JOINER.
JUDD English
Derived from the medieval name JUDD.
KAY (1) English
Derived from the given name KAY (2).
KAY (2) English
Derived from Middle English kaye "wharf, quay". A name for one who lived near or worked on a wharf.
KEEN English
From Old English cene "bold, brave".
KEIGHLEY English
Derived from an English place name meaning "clearing belonging to Cyhha". The Old English given name Cyhha is of unknown meaning.
KELLOGG English
From the Middle Ages, a name for a butcher meaning "killer of hogs".
KELSEY English
From an English place name meaning "Cenel's island", from the Old English name Cenel "fierce" in combination with eg "island".
KEMP English
Derived from Middle English kempe meaning "champion, warrior".
KENDALL English
Derived from the town of Kendale in England, and was so called from the river Kent, on which it is situated, and dael "valley, dale". Therefore, it means "valley on the river Kent".
KENDRICK (1) English
From the Old English given names CYNERIC or CENRIC.
KENNARD English
Derived from the given names CYNEWEARD or CYNEHEARD.
KERSEY English
From an English place name meaning "watercress island".
KEVINS English
Means "son of KEVIN".
KEVINSON English
Means "son of KEVIN".
KEY English
Variant of KAY (1) or KAY (2).
KEYS English
Variant of KAY (1).
KIDD English, Scottish
From a nickname meaning "young goat, kid" in Middle English.
KILLAM English
Denoted one who hailed from the English town of Kilham, meaning "kiln hamlet".
KIMBALL English
Derived from the Welsh given name CYNBEL or the Old English given name CYNEBALD.
KIMBERLEY English
From various English places called Kimberley. They mean either "CYNEBURGA's field", "CYNEBALD's field" or "CYNEMÆR's field".
KING English
From Old English cyning, originally a nickname for someone who either acted in a kingly manner or who worked for or was otherwise associated with a king.
KINGSLEY English
From a place name meaning "king's clearing" in Old English.
KINGSTON English
From a place name meaning "king's town" in Old English.
KINSLEY English
Derived from the given name CYNESIGE.
KIPLING English
From the name of a town in Yorkshire. A famous bearer of this name is the author Rudyard Kipling.
KIRBY English
Derived from Kirkeby, a name for numerous locations in northern England. Kirkeby is derived from kirkja and byr, two Norse words meaning "church" and "settlement" respectively.
KITCHEN English
Occupational name for a person who worked in a kitchen (of a monastery for example).
KNAGGS English
Found most commonly in the north of England, in particular Yorkshire. It means "someone that lived by a knagg (a small mound)".
KNIGHT English
From Old English cniht meaning "knight" or "tenant serving as a mounted soldier".
KYNASTON English
Originally derived from a place name meaning "CYNEFRITH's town" in Old English.
LACEY English
Variant of LACY.
LACY English
Derived from Lassy, the name of a town in Normandy. The name of the town was Gaulish in origin, perhaps deriving from a personal name which was Latinized as Lascius.
LAMAR French, English
Originally from a place name in Normandy, which was derived from Old French la mare meaning "the pool".
LANE (1) English
Originally designated one who lived by a lane, a narrow way between fences or hedges, later used of any narrow pathway, including one between houses in a town.
LANGDON English
Derived from an Old English place name meaning "long hill" (effectively meaning "ridge").
LANGLEY (1) English
From any of the various places with this name, all derived from Old English lang "long" and leah "woodland, clearing".
LARSON English
Means "son of Lar", where Lar is a medieval diminutive of LAURENCE (1).
LAW English
Derived from old English hlaw "hill".
LAWRENCE English
Derived from the given name LAURENCE (1). Famous bearers include revolutionary T. E. Lawrence (1888-1935) and author D. H. Lawrence (1885-1930).
LAWSON English
Means "son of LAURENCE (1)".
LAYTON English
Derived from a place name meaning "settlement with a leek garden" in Old English.
LEACH English
Originally indicated a person who was a physician. It comes from the medieval practice of using leeches to bleed people of ills.
LEAVITT English
From Livet, a region in Normandy, France. Vikings conquered the area and a particular family had taken up the name by the time of the Battle of Hastings 1066, when William the Conqueror invaded England.
LEDFORD English
Means "path leading across a ford" from Old English lædan, Middle English leden "to lead" and ford, a shallow area in a stream that may be crossed by wading.
LEE (1) English
Originally given to a person who lived on or near a leah, Old English meaning "woodland, clearing".
LEIGH English
Variant of LEE (1).
LEONARD English
Derived from the given name LEONARD.
LEONARDSON English
Means "son of LEONARD".
LEWIN English
Derived from the given name LEOFWINE.
LEWIS (1) English
Derived from the given name LEWIS. The author C. S. Lewis (1898-1963) was a bearer of this surname.
LEYTON English
Variant of LAYTON.
LINCOLN English
Originally indicated that the bearer was from the English city of Lincoln, called Lindum Colonia by the Romans, derived from Brythonic lindo "lake, pool" and Latin colonia "colony". A famous bearer was Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865), president of the United States during the American Civil War.
LINDON English
Variant of LYNDON.
LINDSAY English, Scottish
From the region of Lindsey in Lincolnshire, which means "LINCOLN island" in Old English.
LINTON English
Originally from place names meaning either "flax town" or "linden tree town" in Old English.
LINWOOD English
Originally derived from a place name meaning "stream forest" in Old English.
LITTLE English
Derived from a nickname given to a short person.
LOCKWOOD English
From an English place name meaning "enclosure forest".
LOMAN English
From the name of the River Loman in Devon.
LONDON English
From the name of the capital city of the United Kingdom, the meaning of which is uncertain.
LONG English
Originally a nickname for a person who had long limbs or who was tall.
LONGSTAFF English
Name for a tipstaff or beadle who carried a long staff as a badge of office, or else referred to someone who was very tall.
LOVE English
From the Old English given name Lufu meaning "love".
LOVEL English
Variant of LOWELL.
LOVELL English
Variant of LOWELL.
LOW English, Scottish
Variant of LAW.
LOWELL English
Derived from a Norman French nickname, from lou "wolf" and a diminutive suffix.
LOWRY Scottish, English
From a diminutive of LAURENCE (1).
LUCAS English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, Dutch
Derived from the given name LUCAS. A famous bearer of this surname is George Lucas (1944-), the creator of the 'Star Wars' movies.
LUKESON English
Means "son of LUKE".
LUM English
From places in Lancashire and West Yorkshire called Lumb, both apparently originally named for Old English lum(m) "pool". The word is not independently attested, but appears also in Lomax and Lumley, and may be reflected in the dialect term lum denoting a well for collecting water in a mine. In some instances the name may be topographic for someone who lived by a pool, Middle English lum(m).
LUND Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, English
Indicated a person who lived near a grove of trees, from Old Norse lundr meaning "grove". There are towns in Sweden and Britain called Lund.
LYNDON English
Originally from a place name meaning "linden tree hill" in Old English.
LYNN English
From the Welsh word llyn meaning "lake".
LYNTON English
Variant of LINTON.
LYON (1) English, French
Habitational name from either the Lyon in southern central France, or Lyons-la-Forêt in Eure, Normandy.
LYON (2) English, French
Either from the given name LEON or else a nickname meaning "lion".
MACEY English
Variant of MASSEY.
MACY English
Variant of MASSEY.
MADISON English
Means "son of MAUD". A famous bearer of this surname was the fourth American president James Madison (1751-1836).
MALLORY English
From Old French maloret meaning "unfortunate, unlucky", a term introduced to England by the Normans.
MANN German, English
From a nickname meaning "man". This may have originally been given in order to distinguish the bearer from a younger person with the same name.
MARCHAND English, French
Occupational surname meaning "merchant", ultimately from Latin mercari "to trade".
MARK English
Derived from the given name MARK.
MARLEY English
Originally denoted a person who hailed from one of the various places in Britain called Marley, ultimately meaning either "pleasant wood", "boundary wood" or "marten wood" in Old English. One of the main characters in Charles Dickens' 'A Christmas Carol' (1843) bears this last name.
MARLOW English
Originally a name for a person from Marlow (Buckinghamshire), England. The place name means "remnants of a lake" from Old English mere "lake" and lafe "remnants, remains".
MARSDEN English
From a place name derived from Old English mearc "boundary" and denu "valley".
MARSHALL English
Derived from Middle English mareschal "a marshal", ultimately derived from Germanic marah "horse" and scalc "servant". It originally referred to someone who took care of horses.
MARSTON English
From a place name derived from Old English mersc "marsh" and tun "enclosure".
MARTEL (1) English, French
Derived from the given name Martel, a medieval diminutive of MARTIN.
MARTEL (2) French, English
Nickname for a smith, derived from old French martel "hammer", ultimately from Latin martellus.
MARTIN English, French, German, Czech
Derived from the given name MARTIN.
MARTINS English
Derived from the given name MARTIN.
MARTINSON English
Means "son of MARTIN".
MASON English
Occupational name for a stoneworker or layer of bricks, from Old French masson, ultimately of Germanic origin (akin to Old English macian "to make").
MASSEY English
Derived from Massy, the name of several towns in France. The name of the town is perhaps derived from a personal name that was Latinized as Maccius.
MASTERS English, Scottish
Means "son of the master" from Middle English maister.
MASTERSON English
Means "son of the master" from Middle English maister.
MATHERS English
Occupational surname meaning "mower" in Old English.
MATHEWS English
Derived from the given name MATTHEW.
MATHEWSON English
Means "son of MATTHEW".
MATTHEWS English
Derived from the given name MATTHEW.
MATTHEWSON English
Means "son of MATTHEW".
MAY English
Derived from the given name MATTHEW.
MAYER (3) English
Occupational name for a mayor, from Middle English mair.
MAYES English
Patronymic form of MAY.
MAYNARD English
Derived from the Germanic given name MEGINHARD.
MEADOWS English
Referred to one who lived in a meadow.
MERCER English
Occupational name for a trader, from Old French mercier.
MERRILL (1) English
Derived from the given name MURIEL.
MERRILL (2) English
From the name of various places in England, derived from Old English myrige "pleasant" and hyll "hill".
MERRITT English
From an English place name meaning "boundary gate".
MICHAEL English
From the given name MICHAEL.
MICHAELS English
Derived from the given name MICHAEL.
MICHAELSON English
Means "son of MICHAEL".
MIDGLEY English
From a village in England called Midgley which meant "midge (insect) wood" in Old English.
MILBURN English
Derived from a place name meaning "mill stream" in Old English.
MILES English
From the given name MILES.
MILFORD English
Originally derived from various place names all meaning "ford by a mill" in Old English.
MILLER English
Occupational surname referring to a person who owned or worked in a grain mill, from Middle English mille "mill".
MILLHOUSE English
Name for someone whose house was in a mill or who worked in a mill.
MILLS English
Originally given to one who lived near a mill or who worked in a mill, from Middle English mille.
MILLWARD English
Means "guardian of the mill" in Old English.
MILTON English
Derived from an English place name meaning "mill town" in Old English. A famous bearer was John Milton (1608-1674), the poet who wrote "Paradise Lost".
MINETT English
From the medieval given name Minne, derived from the Germanic element minna "love".
MITCHELL (1) English, Scottish
Derived from the given name MICHAEL.
MITCHELL (2) English
From a nickname for a large person, from Old English micel "big".
MONDAY (1) English
Derived from the Old Norse given name Mundi which was a diminutive of names beginning with the element mundr meaning "protection".
MONDAY (2) English
Denoted a person for whom this was a significant day, often the day they would pay their feudal service.
MONTGOMERY English, Scottish
From a place name in Calvados, France meaning "GUMARICH's mountain". A notable bearer was Bernard Montgomery (1887-1976), a British army commander during World War II.
MOON (2) English
Originally indicated a person from the town of Moyon in Normandy.
MOORE (1) English
From Middle English mor meaning "open land, bog".
MOORE (2) English
Derived from the given name MAURUS.
MOORE (3) English
Nickname for a person of dark complexion, from Old French more meaning "Moor".
MORCE English
Variant of MORRISS.
MORRIS English, Irish, Scottish, Welsh
Derived from the given name MAURICE.
MORRISON English
Means "son of MORRIS".
MORRISS English
Derived from the given name MORRIS.
MORSE English
Variant of MORRISS.
MOSES Jewish, English
Derived from the given name MOSES.
MOTTERSHEAD English
Derived from the name of a lost place in Cheshire, from the Old English byname Motere which meant "speaker" and Middle English heved meaning "headland".
MOULD English
From the given name Mauld, a medieval form of MATILDA.
MOUNCE English
Possibly an Americanized form of the German given name Manz.
MUNSON English
Patronymic formed from the Norman French nickname moun meaning "monk".
MURGATROYD English
From a place name meaning "MARGARET's road".
MUTTON English
Referred to someone who took care of sheep (a shepherd), or else someone who in some way resembled a sheep.
MYERS English
Patronymic form of MAYER (3).