This is a list of submitted surnames in which the usage is English or American.
Submitted names are contributed by users of this website. The accuracy of these name definitions cannot be guaranteed.
A variation of the English name PARHAM
, based on the village of Parham (one in county Suffolk, another in county Sussex). From the Old English peru
, meaning "pear" (the fruit), and ham
, meaning "homestead".
PERPICH English (American)
Americanized spelling of Croatian and Serbian PRPIĆ
was a term denoting young girls who, in the dry season, would visit houses in the village and pray for rain.
Patronymic surname that was derived from the first name Peter.
From the possessive or plural form of Middle English pytte
‘pit’, ‘hollow’, hence a topographic name for someone who lived by a pit, or a habitational name from a place named with this word, as for example Pett in East Sussex.
PETTY English, Scottish
Derived from Norman French petit
, 'small', thus a nickname for a small or insignificant individual.... [more]
Combination of petty
(derived from petit
meaning "small") and the given name JOHN
, hence a nickname for a small or little man.
A rare nickname given for someone's appearance of blonde and red hair just as a phoenix has colorful plumage and a tail of gold and scarlet.
From the medieval French male personal name FILIBERT
, of Germanic origin and meaning literally "very bright, very famous".
PHILLISKIRK English (Rare)
From a 'lost' medieval parish in England or Scotland, named with the Old Norse element kirk
meaning 'church' or 'place of worship'.... [more]
From the name of a beautiful immortal bird which appears in Egyptian and Greek mythology. After living for several centuries in the Arabian Desert, it would be consumed by fire and rise from its own ashes, with this cycle repeating every 500 years... [more]
This famous Yorkshire name is of early medieval English origin, and is a locational surname deriving from the place in West Yorkshire called Pickersgill, or "Robber's Ravine". The placename is derived from the Middle English "pyker", thief, robber, and "gill", gully, ravine, deep glen.
of Norman origin, from the personal name "Pic", here with the diminutive suffixes "et" or "ot", and recorded as "Picot, Pigot" and Piket". The name is ultimately of Germanic derivation, from "pic", meaning "sharp", or "pointed", which was a common element in names meaning for instance, residence near a "pointed hill", use of a particular sharp or pointed tool or weapon, or a nickname for a tall, thin person.
This surnames origins lie with the Anglo-Saxons. It is a product of their having lived in the parish of Pitchford in Shropshire. ... [more]
English (of Norman origin): habitational name from any of various places, for example in Aisne and Calvados, so called from Old French pierre ‘stone’ + pont ‘bridge’.
Derived from Middle English pigge
meaning "young hog".
PIKE English, Irish
English: topographic name for someone who lived by a hill with a sharp point, from Old English pic
‘point’, ‘hill’, which was a relatively common place name element.... [more]
From Middle English pilch
, a metonymic occupational name for a maker or seller of pilches or a nickname for a habitual wearer of these. A pilch (from Late Latin pellicia
, a derivative of pellis
"skin, hide") was a kind of coarse leather garment with the hair or fur still on it.
Occupational name for a maker or seller of pilches, from an agent derivative of PILCH
. In early 17th-century English, pilcher
was a popular term of abuse, being confused or punningly associated with the unrelated verb pilch
"to steal" and with the unrelated noun pilchard
, a kind of fish.
Means a person who operates the flying controls of an aircraft.
PINAL English, Spanish (Rare)
The name is derived from when the family resided near a place where vennel grew. Vennel was a herb used for cooking. Other sources list the name as a local name derived from the term at the vennel.
Nickname for a chirpy person, from Middle English pinch, pink ‘(chaf)finch’. Compare Finch. possibly a metonymic occupational name from Middle English pinche ‘pleated fabric’, from Middle English pinche(n) ‘to pinch (pastry)’, ‘to pleat (fabric)’, ‘to crimp (hair, etc.)’, also ‘to cavil’, ‘to be niggardly’.
PINCHES English (British, Rare)
This is one of the very earliest of surnames. This is an English name. First recorded in the 12th century it was a nickname of endearment for a bright, chirpy, person, thought by his peer group to be active like a finch... [more]
Of unknown origin. Historically, borne most famously by GIFFORD
Pinchot (1865 - 1946) first Chief of the United States Forest Service.
The surname Pinckney originally denoted someone from Picquigny, France, which derives from a Germanic personal name, Pincino
(of obscure derivation) and the Latin locative suffix -acum
Originally denoted a person who lived near a pine forest or who sold pine firs for a living.
PINK English, German
Nickname, possibly for a small person, from Middle English pink penk
g ‘minnow’ (Old English pinc).English (southeastern): variant of PINCH
.Variant spelling of German PINCK
, an indirect occupational name for a blacksmith, an onomatopoeic word imitating the sound of hammering which was perceived as pink(e)pank... [more]
habitational name from a lost or unidentified place in or bordering on Devon
PINN English, German
A metonymic occupational name for a maker of pins or pegs, which is from Middle English pin
and Middle Low German pinne
meaning ‘pin’ or ‘peg’. In some cases, the German name was an metonymic occupational name for a shoemaker.
PINN English (British)
A topographic or habitational name from a place named with Middle English pinne
, meaning ‘hill’ (Old English penn
PITCHER English, German
From an agent derivative of Middle English pich
‘pitch’, hence an occupational name for a caulker, one who sealed the seams of ships or barrels with pitch. English variant of Pickard
English from Middle English pytte
‘pit’, ‘hollow’, hence a topographic name for someone who lived by a pit or hollow, or a habitational name from a place named with this word, as for example Pitt in Hampshire.
From a medieval nickname for an enthusiastic competitor in sports and games (from Middle English pleyfere
"companion in play, playmate"), or else a different form of Playford
(from a Suffolk place-name meaning "ford where sports are held")... [more]
From the english word "plaza". A mostly famous bearer is actress Aubrey Plaza (1984-)
Either (i) from the medieval female personal name Plaisance
, literally "pleasantness"; or (ii) "person from Piacenza", Italy (from Latin Placentia
, literally "pleasing things").
Means being a very bright man in the near future. Also can be used as a alias.
PLUM English, German, Jewish
English and North German: from Middle English plum(b)e, Middle Low German plum(e) ‘plum’, hence a topographic name for someone who lived by a plum tree, or a metonymic occupational name for a fruit grower... [more]
PLUMER German, 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]
1. Occupational name for a worker in lead, especially a maker of lead pipes and conduits, from Anglo-Norman French plom(m)er, plum(m)er ‘plumber’, from plom(b), plum(b) ‘lead’ (Latin plumbum)... [more]
From a medieval nickname for someone thought to resemble a parrot, from Middle English papejai
"parrot". This probably denoted someone who was talkative or who dressed in bright colours, although it may have described a person who excelled at the medieval sport of pole archery, i.e. shooting at a wooden parrot on a pole.
From a medieval nickname for a vain or flamboyantly dressed person (from Old Norse pá
"peacock"). American author and poet Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849) was a famous bearer.
POLAND English, 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]
Derived from the English word polite. This name was most likely given to a person who was considered to be polite.
POLTIMORE English (Rare)
Rare English surname derived from a Devon place name of Celtic origin, allegedly meaning “pool by the large house”.
From an English surname meaning "dweller by the apple orchard".
PONCE Spanish, English
The Ponce name was carried into England after the migration from Normandy following the Norman Conquest of 1066.'Ponce' is derived from 'Ponsoby',a place in Cumberland, where the family settled. The Ponce motto is 'Pro rege, lege grege' meaning "For the King, law, and people"
Topographic name for someone who lived near a pool or pond, Middle English pole (Old English pōl), or a habitational name from any of the places named with this word, as for example Poole in Dorset, South Pool in Devon, and Poole Keynes in Gloucestershire.
Habitational name from Pooley Bridge in Cumbria, so named from Old English pol ‘pool’ + Old Norse haugr ‘hill’, ‘mound’. topographic name from Middle English pole ‘pool’ + ey ‘low-lying land’ or hey ‘enclosure’
POPP German, English
From a Germanic personal name POPPO
, of uncertain origin and meaning, perhaps originally a nursery word or a short form of for example Bodobert
, a Germanic personal name meaning ‘famous leader’... [more]
PORTUGAL Spanish, 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]
POSEY English, 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.
POTEET English, French
From the French name Pottet
, which is derived from pot
meaning "pot", originally a name for a potter.
The English of Welsh Surname Powys
, which derives from the place "Powys" in Wales.
Unknown source. Surname of many early American pilgrims.
Originates from a now "lost" medieval village believed to have been in the south east of England.
PRESHAW English (British, Rare)
This surname is a habitational name from a locality near Upham on the slopes of the South Downs. It is entirely within a private estate and has its own chapel.
PRESS English, Jewish
A nickname for a pious individual from the Middle English form of "priest" or possibly someone employed by a priest. In the Jewish sense, one whose occupation was to iron clothes.
unexplained; perhaps a habitational name from a lost or unidentified place. Pridmore has long been a Leicestershire name.
Derived from the occupation priest
, which is a minister of a church. It could also be a nickname for a person who is / was a priest.
PRINCE English, French
Nickname from Middle English, Old French prince
), presumably denoting someone who behaved in a regal manner or who had won the title in some contest of skill.
PRIOR English, Scottish, Dutch, German
Derived from Latin prior
meaning "superior". It was used as an occupational surname for a prior, which is a head of a religious house, below an abbot.
PRIVETT French, 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
Occupational name from Middle English prok(e)tour
"steward" (reduced from Old French procurateour
, Latin procurator
"agent", from procurare
"to manage"). The term was used most commonly of an attorney in a spiritual court, but also of other officials such as collectors of taxes and agents licensed to collect alms on behalf of lepers and enclosed orders of monks.
PROPHET English, 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]
PROVOST English, 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
PRUDE English (American)
This surname comes from the English word prude. The definition for the word prude is a person who is or claims to be easily shocked by matters relating to sex or nudity.
PRUDE African American
This surname came from the English word prude. The definition of the word prude is a person who is or claims to be easily shocked by matters relating to sex or nudity.
PRUDHOMME French, 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]
PRUE English, French
English: nickname for a redoubtable warrior, from Middle English prou(s)
‘brave’, ‘valiant’ (Old French proux
Derived from the Middle English word "prou," meaning "brave," or "valiant," with the addition of either of two common diminutive suffixes: "-et" or "-ot." As such, this name is thought to have originally been a nickname for someone small, but brave.
Derived from an Anglo-Norman form of the Late Latin name PRIMUS
. A fictional bearer is Hester Prynne, the protagonist of Nathaniel Hawthorne's novel 'The Scarlet Letter' (1850).
PUCHOL English, English (American)
Puchol is name prominently used in the English culture. "Puchol" means "Little Bitch" and is generally associated with weakness. Studies show that the name and those who have it give cancer to others... [more]
Of uncertain origin; perhaps a variant of Pocket(t)
, from a diminutive of Anglo-Norman French poque
"small pouch", hence a metonymic occupational name for a maker of purses and pouches or a nickname... [more]
From a medieval nickname for someone with a roly-poly physique (from Middle English puddy fat
PULVER Low German, French, English
I comes from the Latin verb meaning "to make powder." This name was given to either an alchemist or one who made gunpowder.
The first name PURDIE
is transferred usage of this surname, which means "by God" in Norman French.
English: metathesized variants of PRUDHOMME
; the -ru- reversal is a fairly common occurrence in words where -r- is preceded or followed by a vowel.
Nickname for someone wore purple clothing or has a purple complexion
Habitational name from Pusey in Oxfordshire (formerly in Berkshire), so called from Old English peose, piosu ‘pea(s)’ + ēg ‘island’, ‘low-lying land’, or from Pewsey in Wiltshire, recorded in Domesday Book as Pevesie, apparently from the genitive case of an Old English personal name Pefe, not independently attested + Old English ēg ‘island’.
PUTTICK English (British)
A variant spelling of the Sussex surname Puttock from the Village of Puttock, which itself derives from the Old English "Puttocke" a bird of prey, the kite. ... [more]
PYBURN English (?)
Apparently from some lost or minor place so named. 1881 British census has 109; KH.
PYGALL English (Hellenized, Rare)
From ancient Greek for rump, associations with prostitution across Europe, commonly given to illegitimate children of prostitutes, found especially in North East England and Nottinghamshire.
Most likely originates from the words pike (the weapon or the fish), having to do with fishermen or soldiers, or pick, having to do with miners or somebody who tills the ground.
From the Middle English word pile
, meaning "stake" or "post", which is derived via Old English from Latin pilum
, meaning "spike" or "javelin". This was a topographic name for someone who lived near a stake or post serving as a landmark, a metonymic occupational name for a stake maker, or a nickname for a tall, strong man.
Recorded in several forms including Pim
, Pimm, Pimme, PYM
, and Pymm, this is a surname which at various times has been prominent in the history of England... [more]
Means "pine" from the Old French pin. This was originally given as a topographical name for someone who lived by a conspicuous pine tree or in a pine forest.
QUAIL English, Manx
A variant of Quayle
, derived from various patronymics meaning "son of Paul". Alternately, an English nickname derived from the bird, perhaps given to a person who was timid, or known for being promiscuous.
From a medieval nickname for an elegantly or flamboyantly dressed person (from Middle English quointerel
"dandy, fop", from quointe
"known, knowledgeable, crafty, elegant").
From Middle English quarey "quarry", a topographic name for someone who lived near a stone quarry, or a metonymic occupational name for someone who worked in one. ... [more]
From a medieval nickname for a very dextrous person, or for someone who habitually wore gloves (from Old French quatremains
, literally "four hands"). A fictional bearer of the surname is Allan Quartermain, the hero of 'King Solomon's Mines' (1886) and other adventure novels by H. Rider Haggard... [more]
QUELCH English (British)
Mid 16th Century variant of the name Wels(c)he, Welsh or Welch, itself deriving from the Middle English "walsche", Celtic, foreign, (Olde English "woelisc", a derivative of "wealh", foreign), and originally given as a distinguishing nickname to a Celt... [more]
English: of uncertain origin; perhaps a variant of Quarmby
, a habitational name from a place so called in West Yorkshire.
From the medieval female personal name Quenilla
, from Old English Cwēnhild
, literally "woman-battle". This was borne by Peter Quennell (1905-1993), a British poet, critic and historian.
Means "person from Rackham", Sussex ("homestead or enclosure with ricks"). This surname was borne by British watercolourist and book illustrator Arthur Rackham (1867-1939).
Habitational name from any of the various places so named, for example in Devon, Nottinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Warwickshire, and Hereford and Worcester. Most are named from Old English read "red" + ford "ford", but it is possible that in some cases the first element may be a derivative of Old English ridan "to ride", with the meaning "ford that can be crossed on horseback".
Apparently an English habitational name from Ragdale in Leicestershire, which is probably named from Old English hraca
"gully", "narrow pass" + dæl
From the Old French male personal name Rainbaut
, of Germanic origin and meaning literally "counsel-brave" (cf. RAGINBALD
RAINWATER English (American)
Americanized form of the German family name Reinwasser, possibly a topographic name for someone who lived by a source of fresh water, from Middle High German reine ‘pure’ + wazzer ‘water’.
Raisbeck is a hamlet in the civil parish of Orton, in the Eden district, in the county of Cumbria, England. The surname Raisbeck originates from the hamlet. The name of the hamlet derives from Hrridarr, a personal name and beck, a stream or river.
English habitation name in Devon meaning "red woodland clearing".
From a Middle English personal name composed of Germanic rad
"counsel, advice" and wolf
"wolf". This was first introduced into England by Scandinavian settlers in the Old Norse form Ráðulfr
, and was reinforced after the Conquest by the Norman form Ra(d)ulf
From the Old French male personal name Rainbert
). It was borne by Dame Marie Rambert (original name Cyvia Rabbam, later Miriam Rambach; 1888-1982), a Polish-born British ballet dancer and choreographer.
RAMSBOTTOM English (British)
Denoted a person who resided near a physical feature such as a hill, stream, church, or type of tree. It is also a habitational name from a market town named Ramsbottom
, located in Greater Manchester, England.
RANDOLPH English, German
Classicized spelling of Randolf
, a Germanic personal name composed of the elements rand
"rim (of a shield), shield" and wolf
"wolf". This was introduced into England by Scandinavian settlers in the Old Norse form Rannúlfr
, and was reinforced after the Norman Conquest by the Norman form Randolf
RANGER English, German, French
English: occupational name for a gamekeeper or warden, from Middle English ranger
, an agent derivative of range
(n) ‘to arrange or dispose’.... [more]
Patronymic from the Middle English personal name Rannulf
, of continental Germanic origin.
RASBAND American (Americanized, Rare)
This name is not a very common family name found in the United States. The first Rasband (Thomas) coming to the U.S. arrived in New Orleans on the ship North Atlantic on 1 November 1850 and arrived in Salt Lake City, Utah on 13 August 1856... [more]
Possibly a habitational name from Ratsbury in Lynton, Devon.
Habitational name from any of the places, in various parts of England, called Ratcliff(e), Radcliffe, Redcliff, or Radclive, all of which derive their names from Old English rēad meaning "red" + clif meaning "cliff", "slope", "riverbank".
Of unknown origin, but might denote a person with short legs. From Olde English rhath
, meaning "short, and bon
RAVENEL English, 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
RAVENSCAR English (British)
From a coastal village with the same name, located in the Scarborough district of North Yorkshire, England.
From the Olde German and Anglo-Saxon personal name ROLF
. Originally derived from the Norse-Viking pre 7th Century 'Hrolfr' meaning "Fame-Wolf".
From a Germanic personal name with the elements ric-
meaning "powerful" and -frid
RAYMOND English, French
From the Norman personal name Raimund
, composed of the Germanic elements ragin
"advice, counsel" and mund
Habitational name from the county seat of Berkshire, which gets its name from Old English Readingas
‘people of Read(a)’, a byname meaning ‘red’. Topographic name for someone who lived in a clearing, an unattested Old English ryding.
Status name for the director of an institution, in particular the head of a religious house or a college. Also an anglicized form of RICHTER
Location name meaning "clearing or cleared woodland." Communities called Redden include one in Roxburghshire, Scotland and another in Somerset, England. A notable bearer is actor Billy Redden who played the dueling banjoist Lonnie in the 1972 film 'Deliverance.'
Habitational name from Redwick in Gloucestershire, named in Old English with hrēod
"reeds" and wīc
This surname is derived from a geographical locality. 'of Reddish,' a village near Stockport, Cheshire.
REDMAN English, Irish
Variant of RAYMOND
. Also a nickname for a person with red hair or a ruddy complexion, from Middle English rudde
"red" and man
REDPATH Scottish, English
Habitational name from a place in Berwickshire, probably so called from Old English read
‘red’ + pæð
‘path’. This name is also common in northeastern England.
Name possibly derived from the colour of the bark of trees or the name of the town Reedworth between Durham and Devon
REEDUS English, Scottish
An English and Scottish name of uncertain origin. Possibly a reduced form of English Redhouse, a habitational name from any of the numerous places named Redhouse, including over ninety farms.
The origins of the Reidhead surname are uncertain. In some instances, it was no doubt derived from the Old English word "read," meaning "red," and was a nickname that came to be a surname. Either way, we may conclude that it meant "red-haired" or "ruddy complexioned."
From the Old French male personal name Riulf
, of Germanic origin and meaning literally "power-wolf" (cf. RICULF
RENLEY Jewish (Rare), English (Rare)
Possibly derived from the Old English rinc
"man, warrior" or rim
'edge, circular edge' or possibly wraenna
'wren', and leah
RENSHAW English, Scottish
A habitational surname from any of the so-called or like-sounding places in the United Kingdom. These include Renishaw in Derbyshire, Ramshaw in Durham, the lost Renshaw in Cheshire and Radshaw in Yorkshire... [more]
Location name from northern England meaning "brush wood settlement" or place where brush wood, also known as rispe
From a medieval nickname for someone who is full of noisy enthusiasm and energy (from Middle English revel
from the surname Revel, a variant of REVELL
, a Middle English and Old French name referring to festivity
American form of German 'Rexforth' thought to mean "kings crossing".
RHETT English, Dutch
Anglicized form of Dutch de Raedt
, derived from raet