MessiaenDutch, French Derived from Messiaen, the (archaic) Dutch form of the latinate first name Messianus, which itself is ultimately derived from the Roman praenomen Messus. The meaning of Messus is not wholly certain; it may be derived from the Latin verb meto "to reap, to harvest, to cut, to sever", or from the latinized form of Greek mesos or messos "(the) middle, (the) middle one"... [more]
MessierFrench Occupational name for someone who kept watch over harvested crops, Old French messier 'harvest master' (Late Latin messicarius, agent derivative of messis 'harvest').
MetrejonLouisiana Creole (?), French (?) Maiden surname of Constance Leto (nee Metrejon). She was born in Louisiana and has Cajun(French) ancestry. The Metrejon line is traced back to Joseph Marie Maitrejean, who was born c. 1778, in Belle-Île-en-Mer, France, an island off the coast of Brittany.
MickGerman, Dutch, Irish Short form of the given name Mikolaj or an occupational name from Middle Low German and Middle Dutch micke "(wheat or rye) bread"... [more]
MickleyFrench It originated when an immigrant family named Michelet came to New York from Northern France. Because they had a foreign surname, they made up the names Mickley and Michelin. The originator was Jean Jacques Michelet (John Jacob Mickley), a private in the Revolutionary War... [more]
MiddagDutch From the Dutch word for "Midday". The earliest/oldest records of the surname are found in the Netherlands (Holland).
MielkeDutch, German The name is derived from the personal name Miel, a diminutive of the name Aemilius, and means "son of Miel."
MolyneuxFrench Possibly a habitational name from Moulineux, meaning "mill of the waters", or derives from the Old French name De Molines or De Moulins, meaning "mill". The surname has been linked to a large French family that settled in Lancashire from France.
MontyFrench, English Topographic name for a mountain dweller, from Old French mont 'mountain' (Latin mons, montis).
MonvoisinFrench Married surname of a infamous 17th century fortune teller and poisoner, Catherine Monvoisin nee Deshayes, known as La Voisin. Executed for witchcraft in 1680 in the affair of the poisons. Her clients included the elite of Paris including a mistress of Louis XIV.
MoraleeEnglish, French First found in Norfolk where they were seated from very early times and were granted lands by Duke William of Normandy, their liege Lord, for their distinguished assistance at the Battle of Hastings.
MorantEnglish, French From the Old French personal name Morant, perhaps from a nickname meaning "steadfast", or alternatively of Germanic origin and meaning literally "courage-raven". A known bearer was the British-born Australian soldier and poet Breaker Morant, original name Edwin Henry Murrant (?1864-1902).
MostDutch Topographic name for someone who lived in a place where moss grew.
MotelFrench Topographic name from a derivative of Old French motte ‘fortified stronghold’.
MullinixFrench A locational name "of de Moloneaux" probably from the noble family who trace their descent from William the Conqueror, from Molineaux-sur-Seine, near Rouen. The name came to England during the wake of the Norman Conquest... [more]
NaultFrench From a short form of various medieval personal names derived from Germanic personal names formed with wald 'rule' as the final element, in particular Arnold.
NavarreFrench The name means "By the sea". Originally a country of its own, located between Spain and France, Navarre became a part of France in 1284 when the Queen of Navarre married King Philip IV of France. After much war, becoming independent once again, and falling into Spanish rule, the Kingdom of Navarre is now split between Spain and France.
NobleEnglish, Scottish, Irish, French Nickname from Middle English, Old French noble "high-born, distinguished, illustrious" (Latin nobilis), denoting someone of lofty birth or character, or perhaps also ironically someone of low station... [more]
NoirFrench Means "black" in French, originally used in Northern France as an ethnic nickname for someone from Southern France, Spain, Italy or North Africa. It also may have been used for someone who wore dark clothing or for someone who had an occupation during the night or was associated with the night.
NolfGerman, Dutch From a short form of the personal name Arnolf, composed of the Germanic elements arn 'eagle' + wulf 'wolf'. Dutch: from a reduced form of Nodolf, derived from the personal name Odolf by transfer of the final -n in a preceding personal name such as Jan, Simoen
NugentEnglish, Irish, French An English, Irish (of Norman origin) and French habitational surname derived from any of several places in northern France (such as Nogent-sur-Oise), From Latin novientum and apparently an altered form of a Gaulish name meaning "new settlement".
OdelinFrench Not to be confused with the similarly spelled Odelín, which is Spanish rather than French, though they could have similar origins in name.
OdigeFrench, African A Name from french Odige (O.DI Zeouf) zeouf with means egg Zeouf is spelled as ge to shorten the name. This surname means fighter The French has been known to be Lovely and the language of love un-violent... [more]
OrleyDutch, Flemish, English A surname of uncertain origin found among the Dutch, Flemish and English. In England the name is primarily found in Yorkshire and Devon. Orley may be an adapted form of a French name D'Orley or a nickname for Orlando... [more]
OsterhoutDutch From the town of Oosterhout,, meaning "East Wood", as it is located nearby forests in the east of the Netherlands. Primary modern usage is in the United States can be traced back to Jan Jensen van Oosterhoudt, who immigrated to New Amsterdam in the 17th Century, and has been generally been simplified to Osterhout, where the O is pronounced as "AW"... [more]
OstiguyBasque, French Worn Quebec (Ostéguy variant), the name is visibly Basque and assumes initially a Ostegi form, which could designate a place where the foliage is abundant (osteo = + -egi sheet suffix). Alternatively, place the cold, cold house (Ortz, otz, followed -egi or -tegi).
OstranderDutch Translated as "from the east border." The name may have been originally borne by one who lived near the eastern border of a town, province, or country.
OudenhovenDutch Derived from Dutch oude "old" and hoeve "farm; farmstead; manor". As a surname it is derived from one of the many places of this name, for example in Menen, Passendale, Steenvoorde, Steenwerk, Broekburg or Godewaardsvelde.
OuyFrench Some derive this name from the French word "gui," meaning mistletoe. Others think it comes through the Celtic name "Kei," from Caius. Others belive the name comes from the French words "guide," a leader, or "guidon," a banner... [more]
PannebakkerDutch A Dutch name that literally means “producer of tiles.” the earliest trace of the name in the Netherlands is in the year 1568, associated with Herr Jan de Pannebakker and his wife Nancy who were accused of heresy and killed by the Spaniards at Utrecht.... [more]
PasteurFrench French for "shepherd" or "preacher, pastor". Famous bearer Louis Pasteur (1822-1895), French chemist who created the first rabies vaccine, gave his name to the process of 'pasteurization'.
PathéFrench Meaning, "Dweller near an important path or footway."
PelterDutch This surname is occupational in origin. It comes from the Latin word "pellis," meaning "skin" or "hide," and would have originally been born by someone who tanned or sold hides and pelts for a living.
PennebakerDutch (Anglicized) Coming from the Dutch name Pannebakker. The name is of occupational origin and is traceable to a term literally translated as "producer of tiles." Legend has it that the family imigrated from central Europe in the mid 1300’s to the Netherlands to escape the wars and plague that were common in the area at that time.
PenningEnglish, Dutch, Low German From early Middle English penning, Low German penning, and Middle Dutch penninc, all meaning "penny". It was used as a topographic surname or a nickname referring to tax dues of a penny.
PenseFrench Pense is, quite literally, a French word meaning "to think" or "thought", but is also a surname. Sometimes confused with the surname Pence, which is German.
PépinFrench From the Old French name Pepis, itself a form of the given name Pépin. Alternatively, it may be derived from French pépin meaning "(fruit) seed", thus making it an occupational name for a gardener or someone who grew fruit-bearing trees.
PeppeDutch From Peppo, a pet form of a Germanic personal name.
PerdueEnglish, Irish, French English and Irish from Old French par Dieu ‘by God’, which was adopted in Middle English in a variety of more or less heavily altered forms. The surname represents a nickname from a favorite oath... [more]
PicquetFrench A variant of Piquet of which it's meaning is of a military terminology of one soldier/small group of soldiers on a line forward of a postion to provide a warning of an enemy advance... [more]
PiénoelFrench (Rare) French surname that possibly refers to the buckled shoes that the original bearer was wearing, in which case it is derived from Old French pié meaning "foot" combined with Old French noiel meaning "buckle"... [more]
PlumerGerman, English, Dutch North German (Plümer) and English: variant of Plum, the suffix -er denoting habitation or occupation. Altered form of South German Pflümer, an occupational name for a grower or seller of plums, from an agent derivative of Middle High German pflume ‘plum’... [more]
PlumierFrench, Belgian Possibly an occupational name for a dealer in feathers and quills, from an agent derivative of Old French plume "feather, plume" (compare English and Dutch Plumer)... [more]
PolandEnglish, German, French (Anglicized), Irish (Anglicized) English and German name is derived from the Middle High German Polan, which means "Poland". The surname originally signified a person with Polish connections.This French surname originated from an occupational name of a poultry breeder, or from a fearful person; it is derived from the Old French poule, which means "chicken".In other cases, particularly in Ireland, the English Poland is a variant of Polin,which is in turn an Anglicised form of the original Gaelic spelling of Mac Póilín, which translated from Irish means "son of little Paul"... [more]
PortugalSpanish, Portuguese, English, Catalan, French, Jewish Spanish, Portuguese, Catalan, English, French, and Jewish surname meaning ethnic name or regional name for someone from Portugal or who had connections with Portugal. The name of the country derives from Late Latin Portucale, originally denoting the district around Oporto (Portus Cales, named with Latin portus ‘port’, ‘harbor’ + Cales, the ancient name of the city)... [more]
PoseyEnglish, French Derived from the Greek word "desposyni." The Desposyni is a term referring to a group of people that are allegedly direct blood relatives to Jesus. They are mentioned in Mark 3:21 and Mark 3:31. American actress Parker Posey is a famous bearer.
PosthumusDutch, Low German From a personal name which was given to a posthumous child, i.e., one born after the death of his father, derived from Latin postumus "last, last-born" (superlative of posterus "coming after, subsequent") via Late Latin posthumus, which was altered by association with Latin humare "to bury", suggesting death (i.e., thought to consist of post "after" and humus "grave", hence "after death"); the one born after the father's death obviously being the last.
PrinceEnglish, French Nickname from Middle English, Old French prince (Latin princeps), presumably denoting someone who behaved in a regal manner or who had won the title in some contest of skill.
PrinsDutch, Jewish Means "prince" in Dutch, but almost never a surname for a prince. Instead, it's an occupational surname for someone in the service of a prince or a nickname for someone who acted in a regal manner. The surname is also Jewish Dutch and is used as an ornamental adoption of Dutch prins still meaning "prince".
PrivettFrench, English, Welsh (?) French, from the given name Privat (see Privatus). Also an English habitational name from a place so named in Hampshire, derived from Old English pryfet "privet".
ProphetEnglish, Scottish, French, German Scottish, English, French, and German: nickname from Middle English and Old French prophete, Middle High German prophet ‘prophet’, ‘seer’, ultimately from Greek prophetes ‘predictor’, from pro ‘before’ + a derivative of phemi ‘to speak’... [more]
ProustFrench From a nickname derived from French preux meaning "valiant, brave". A famous bearer was Marcel Proust (1871-1922), a French writer.
ProvencherFrench From the French word for the flower periwinkle. (pervenche) Brought to Canada from France in 1660 by Sebastien Provencher.
ProvostEnglish, French Derived from the Middle English provost; referring to the person who heads a religious chapter in a cathedral or educational establishment. It was also used as a nickname for a self-important person and is a French variant of Prevost.
PrudhommeFrench, English, Norman, Medieval French French (Prud’homme) and English (of Norman origin): nickname from Old French prud’homme ‘wise’, ‘sensible man’, a cliché term of approbation from the chivalric romances. It is a compound of Old French proz, prod ‘good’, with the vowel influenced by crossing with prudent ‘wise’ + homme ‘man’... [more]
PrueEnglish, French English: nickname for a redoubtable warrior, from Middle English prou(s) ‘brave’, ‘valiant’ (Old French proux, preux).... [more]
RavelFrench, French (African) Derived from either a place called Ravel in the district of Drome or Provence, or from the word 'rave' meaning a root vegetable, and hence a grower or seller of such items.
RavenelEnglish, French Habitational name from Ravenel in Oise or a metonymic occupational name for a grower or seller of horseradish, from a diminutive of Old French ravene ‘horseradish’ (Latin raphanus)... [more]
RaymondEnglish, French From the Norman personal name Raimund, composed of the Germanic elements ragin "advice, counsel" and mund "protection".
RéalFrench This can derive from several different sources: southern French réal "royal", a word which was applied to someone either as a nickname (presumably given to people perceived as being regal) or as an occupational name (given to a person in the service of the king); or the French place name Réal, in which case this is a habitational name taken from any of various places which were named for having been part of a royal domain (also compare Reau, Reaux).
ReusDutch, German, Catalan Dutch: nickname for a big man, from Middle Dutch reuse(n) 'giant'. German: topographic name from Middle High German riuse 'fish trap' (Middle Low German ruse) or from a regional term reuse 'small stream', 'channel'... [more]
RhettEnglish, Dutch Anglicized form of Dutch de Raedt, derived from raet "advice, counsel".
RhineGerman, French, English, Irish A habitational name for an individual whom lived within close proximity of the River Rhine (see Rhein). The river name is derived from a Celtic word meaning 'to flow' (Welsh redan, 'flow').... [more]
RhotonGerman, French Rhoton is a German and French surname from the 1800s. Some people believe that it is derived from the French word for red, but the origin is overall unknown. The name represents strength and power.
RivettEnglish, French English (East Anglia): metonymic occupational name for a metalworker, from Middle English, Old French rivet ‘small nail or bolt’ (from Old French river ‘to fix or secure’, of unknown origin).... [more]