Submitted names are contributed by users of this website. The accuracy of these name definitions cannot be guaranteed.
This early occupational and mainly 'midlands' English surname, is actually of pre-medieval French origins. Introduced into England at the time of the Norman Conquest of 1066, it derives from the French word flaonet
meaning a 'little flan', and described a maker of patisserie or pancakes.
Means "person who lives near a pool" (Middle English flasshe
Meaning unknown. It is used in the 2019 movie Joker as the real name of the titular character played by actor Joaquin Phoenix.
FLINT English, German
Topographic name for someone who lived near a significant outcrop of flint, Old English, Low German flint
, or a nickname for a hard-hearted or physically tough individual.
Nickname from Middle English flo(u)r
‘flower’, ‘blossom’ (Old French flur
, from Latin flos
, genitive floris
). This was a conventional term of endearment in medieval romantic poetry, and as early as the 13th century it is also regularly found as a female personal name.
Metonymic occupational name for a miller or flour merchant, or perhaps a nickname for a pasty-faced person, from Middle English flo(u)r
‘flour’. This is in origin the same word as in 1, with the transferred sense ‘flower, pick of the meal’... [more]
Occupational name for an arrowsmith, from an agent derivative of Middle English flō
‘arrow’ (Old English flā
From the English word flute
which is an instrument.
Nickname for someone with a peculiarity or deformity of the foot, from Middle English fot (Old English fot), or in some cases from the cognate Old Norse byname Fótr.
Habitational name from any of the places in Cambridgeshire, Essex, and Norfolk named Fordham, from Old English ford
‘ford’ + ham
‘homestead’ or hamm
‘enclosure hemmed in by water’.
not sure how i can up with this but i used it for my hp professor oc
English from a Norman personal name, a short form of various Germanic names formed with folk
‘people’. See also Volk
FOWL English, Popular Culture
This name is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and derives from the Old English pre 7th Century word fugol
, "fowl", "bird", which was used as a byname and as a personal name. The medieval form of the word was the Middle English development foul
, used as a continuation of the Old English personal name and also as a nickname for someone who in some way resembled a bird.
Means "fox stream", from Old English fox and well(a), meaning stream.
FRALEY English (American)
Anglicized/Americanized version of the German surname "Frohlich", meaning "happy" or "cheerful".
English: habitational name from any of various places so called, of which there are several in Gloucestershire and one in Dorset. Most take the name from the Frome river (which is probably from a British word meaning ‘fair’, ‘brisk’) + Old English tun ‘enclosure’, ‘settlement’... [more]
Status name for a person whom lived on an area of land without having to pay obligations. From Norman French frank
, 'free' and Middle English land
, 'land'. This surname is common in Yorkshire.... [more]
Nickname or status name from Old English frēo
"free(-born)", i.e. not a serf.
FREELING English, Dutch
This is the surname of Christian Freeling (born February 1, 1947 in Enschede, Netherlands)a Dutch game designer and inventor. This surname was also used for the main character "Carol Anne Freeling" in the Poltergeist film of 1982 as well.... [more]
FRENCH English, Anglo-Saxon
Ethnic name for someone from France, Middle English frensche
, or in some cases perhaps a nickname for someone who adopted French airs. Variant of Anglo-Norman French Frain
English from Middle English frette
, Old French frete
‘interlaced work (in metal and precious stones)’ such as was used for hair ornaments and the like, hence a metonymic occupational name for a maker of such pieces.
From the Middle English personal name Frewine
, literally "noble or generous friend".
Nickname for a companionable person, from Middle English frend "friend" (Old English freond). In the Middle Ages the term was also used to denote a relative or kinsman, and the surname may also have been acquired by someone who belonged to the family of someone who was a more important figure in the community
Means "person from Frisby", Leicestershire ("farmstead of the Frisians"). A frisbee is a plastic disc thrown from person to person as a game; the trademarked name, registered in 1959 by Fred Morrison, was inspired by the Frisbie bakery of Bridgeport, Connecticut, whose pie tins were the original models for the plastic discs.
FRIZZELL English (Rare)
Either (i) from Friseal
, the Scottish Gaelic form of Fraser
; or (ii) from a medieval nickname applied to someone who dressed in a showy or gaudy style (from Old French frisel
Topographical name from the village of Froggatt in Derbyshire.
From the Old English personal name Frōda
or Old Norse Fróthi
, both meaning literally "wise" or "prudent". A variant spelling was borne by British historian James Anthony Froude (1818-1894).
English (chiefly East Anglia): from a Germanic personal name composed of the elements folk ‘people’ + hari, heri ‘army’, which was introduced into England from France by the Normans; isolated examples may derive from the cognate Old English Folchere
or Old Norse Folkar
, but these names were far less common.
Habitational name from a place in Scotland. Derived from Old English fugol
"bird" and tun
FURLONG English, Irish
Apparently a topographic name from Middle English furlong ‘length of a field’ (from Old English furh meaning "furro" + lang meaning "long".
FURMAN Polish, Czech, Slovak, Jewish, Slovene, English, German (Anglicized)
Polish, Czech, Slovak, Jewish (eastern Ashkenazic), and Slovenian: occupational name for a carter or drayman, the driver of a horse-drawn delivery vehicle, from Polish, Yiddish, and Slovenian furman
, a loanword from German (see Fuhrmann
Northern English: of uncertain origin, perhaps a habitational name from a minor place named with Old Norse gafl
‘gable’, which was applied to a triangular-shaped hill. The mountain called Great Gable in Cumbria is named in this way.... [more]
Habitational name from Cadborough, alias Gateborough, in Rye, Sussex, probably so named from Old English gāt meaning "goat" + beorg meaning "hill".
Habitational name from Gaddesby in Leicestershire, recorded in Domesday Book as Gadesbi
and so named from the Old Norse personal name Gaddr
(or from Old Norse gaddr
"spur (of land)") and býr
GAINES English, Norman, Welsh
English (of Norman origin): nickname for a crafty or ingenious person, from a reduced form of Old French engaine
‘ingenuity’, ‘trickery’ (Latin ingenium
‘native wit’). The word was also used in a concrete sense of a stratagem or device, particularly a trap.... [more]
From the city of Gainsborough in Lincolnshire, England. A famous bearer of this surname includes English painter Thomas Gainsborough.
GALL Scottish, Irish, English
Nickname, of Celtic origin, meaning "foreigner" or "stranger". In the Scottish Highlands the Gaelic term gall
was applied to people from the English-speaking lowlands and to Scandinavians; in Ireland the same term was applied to settlers who arrived from Wales and England in the wake of the Anglo-Norman invasion of the 12th century... [more]
Nickname for a cheerful or high-spirited person, from Old French, Middle English galant
"bold, dashing, lively". The meanings "gallant" and "attentive to women" are further developments, which may lie behind some examples of the surname.
English: occupational name for a messenger or scullion (in a monastery), from Old French galopin ‘page’, ‘turnspit’, from galoper ‘to gallop’.
from the Old Norse byname Gamall meaning "old", which was occasionally used in North England during the Middle Ages as a personal name. ... [more]
From a medieval nickname applied to a merry or sportive person (from Middle English gamen
"game"), or to someone who walked in a strange way or had some peculiarity of the legs (from Anglo-Norman gambon
(i) "grower or seller of garlic"; (ii) perhaps from a medieval personal name descended from Old English Gārlāc
, literally "spear-play"; (iii) an anglicization of the Belorussian Jewish name Garelick
, literally "distiller"
Comes from a lost locational name from the Olde English gara
, referring to a "triangular piece of land" or to a "spearhead", and wudu
meaning a "wood".
Meaning "Goat Shelter". English (Lancashire) habitual name from Gatesgill in Cumbria, so named from Old Norse geit ‘goat’ + skáli ‘shelter’. The surname is first recorded in the early half of the 14th Century.
Topographic name for someone who lived by the gates of a medieval walled town. The Middle English singular gate
is from the Old English plural, gatu
, of geat
"gate" (see Yates
English of uncertain origin; probably a variant of Catlin
, a nickname from Old English gœdeling
‘kinsman’, ‘companion’, but also ‘low fellow’.
A different form of Gadsby
("person from Gaddesby", Leicestershire ("Gaddr's farmstead")). A fictional bearer is Jay Gatsby, the central character of F. Scott Fitzgerald's novel 'The Great Gatsby' (1925).
Perhaps an altered spelling of the middle English Gabbett
, which is from a pet form of the personal name GABRIEL
GAY English, French
Nickname for a lighthearted or cheerful person, from Middle English, Old French gai
GAY English, Norman
Habitational name from places in Normandy called Gaye, from an early proprietor bearing a Germanic personal name cognate with Wade.
Possibly a nickname for a cheerful person, derived from the archaic word "gay" meaning "happy". A famous bearer was the American singer Marvin Gaye (1939-1984).
Derived from Old French gaillard
meaning "high-spirited, boistrous".
Derived from the Germanic name element ger
, meaning "spear".
Variant of Geer, Gehr or Geary
, all related to the Old High German element gēr
(Old English gār
, Old Norse geirr
) meaning "spear, arrow". A famous bearer is American actor Richard Gere (b... [more]
GERMAN English, Norman, German, Jewish, Greek
From Old French germain
meaning "German". This sometimes denoted an actual immigrant from Germany, but was also used to refer to a person who had trade or other connections with German-speaking lands... [more]
Diminutive of names containing ger
, meaning "spear".
The first recorded use of the name is from 1291; Robert de Gidlow was a freeholder in Aspull, Lancanshire, United Kingdom and the name occurs frequently down to the 17th century. The Gidlow family moved to the United States in the mid-18th century where the spelling was changed to Goodlow
and eventually to Goodloe
Gifford is an English name for someone who comes from Giffords Hall in Suffolk. In Old English, it was Gyddingford, or "ford associated with Gydda." Alternatively, it could come from the Middle English nickname, "Giffard," from Old French meaning "chubby-cheeked."
Means either (i) "person from Gilby", Lincolnshire ("Gilli's farm"); or (ii) "little Gilbert
Topographic name for someone who lived by a ravine or deep glen, Middle English gil(l), Old Norse gil "ravine"
From the Norman personal name Gillebrand
, of Germanic origin and meaning literally "hostage-sword".
Either (i) from a shortened form of the Germanic personal name Gangulf
, literally "walking wolf"; or (ii) a different form of Gingold
From a medieval nickname applied to a brave man (or, with heavy irony, to a cowardly one), from Old French cuer de lion
From a short form of the various Old English personal names with a first element glæd
"shining, joyful". Compare Gladwin
Probably means "bright island", from the Old English element glæd
"bright" (cf. Glædwine
) and the English element ney
"island" (cf.... [more]
Means either "sword-maker" or "sword-seller", or else from a nickname applied to a skilled swordsman (in either case from Middle English gleyve
GLISSEN English, Irish
Possible British version of the Irish surname Glasson from the the Gaelic word O’Glasain. Meaning green from the counties of Tipperary.
GOBER English, French
The surname Gober was first found in Warwickshire where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor. The Norman influence of English history dominated after the Battle of Hastings in 1066. The language of the courts was French for the next three centuries and the Norman ambience prevailed.
Comes from the Germanic personal name Godin-, a pet form of any of various compound names beginning with god, got ‘god’. Compare Godbold, Goddard, and Godfrey.
Means "Son of Godwin
". First born by Harold Godwinson. From his father Godwine
, Earl of Wessex. Harold was defeated & killed during the battle of Hastings in 1066 by William the Bastard, now known as William the Conqueror.
GOLD English, German
From Old English, Old High German gold
"gold", applied as a metonymic occupational name for someone who worked in gold, i.e. a refiner, jeweler, or gilder, or as a nickname for someone who either had many gold possessions or bright yellow hair.
From an Old English personal name Golda
(or the feminine Golde
), which persisted into the Middle Ages as a personal name. The name was in part a byname from gold
"gold", and in part a short form of the various compound names with this first element.
From the English word golden
which is the yellow color.
Occupational name for a worker in gold, a compound of Old English gold
"gold" and smið
"smith". In North America it is very often an English translation of German or Jewish Goldschmidt
The Gol part has uncertain meaning, but Ton means "Town".
Habitational name from Gowdall in East Yorkshire, named from Old English golde
"marigold" and Old English halh
From Middle English gode
"good" and ale
"ale, malt liquor", hence a metonymic occupational name for a brewer or an innkeeper.
From a medieval nickname probably applied either to someone of average abilities or to an easily satisfied person; also, perhaps from a medieval nickname meaning "good servant".
Generally explained as a nickname meaning 'good fellow' or 'good companion'.
Nickname for a reliable friend or neighbor, from Middle English gode
meaning "good", and frend
meaning "friend". It is an English translation and cognate of German Gutfreund
, from Middle High German guot
meaning "good" and vriunt
The name Gooding comes from the baptismal name for "the son of Godwin"
Goodloe traces back to the English Gidlow
. The first recorded use of the name is from 1291; Robert de Gidlow was a freeholder in Aspull, Lancanshire, United Kingdom and the name occurs frequently down to the 17th century... [more]
Nickname for a dutiful son, from Middle English gode
‘good’ + sone
A name originating from Kent, England believed to come from the elements gara
meaning "from a triangular shaped homestead." Compare Gore
Derived from the name of the village of Goring-by-the-Sea in Sussex
Habitational name from the hamlet of Gorsuch, Lancashire, earlier Gosefordsich, derived from Old English gosford
meaning "goose ford" and sic
meaning "small stream".
English: habitational name from Gotham in Nottinghamshire, so named from Old English gat
‘goat’ + ham
‘homestead’ or hamm
GOULTER English (Rare)
This very unusual name has long been recorded in England but perhaps surprisingly as a Norman personal name. The first recording in England was as "Galterii" which appears in the Domesday Book of 1086 for London as a French form of the Olde German "Walter" translating as "Mighty Army".
Metonymic occupational name for a clerk or scribe, from Anglo-Norman French grafe
"quill, pen" (a derivative of grafer
"to write", Late Latin grafare
, from Greek graphein
GRANGE English, French
English and French topographic name for someone who lived by a granary, from Middle English, Old French grange
‘granary’, ‘barn’, from granum
GRANT English, Scottish
From a medieval personal name, probably a survival into Middle English of the Old English byname Granta
Habitational name from Grantham in Lincolnshire, of uncertain origin. The final element is Old English hām
"homestead"; the first may be Old English grand
"gravel" or perhaps a personal name Granta
, which probably originated as a byname meaning "snarler"... [more]
GRASS English, German
Topographic name for someone who owned or lived by a meadow, or a metonymic occupational name for someone who made or sold hay, from Middle English gras
, Middle High German gras
"grass, pasture, grazing".
From a nickname given to somebody with grass-like hair, making this surname’s meaning “he with grass-like hair.”
Occupational name from Middle English greyve "steward", from Old Norse greifi or Low German greve
GRAYLING English (British)
Uncommon surname of unclear origin; possible medieval locational name, or a derivative of the French surname Grail or the diminutive Graillon.... [more]
One who came from Greasby, a parish on the Wirral Peninsula, in Cheshire, now Merseyside.
GREELEY English, Norman
English (of Norman origin): nickname for someone with a pock-marked face, from Old Northern French greslé
‘pitted’, ‘scarred’ (from gresle
‘hailstone’, of Germanic origin).
Notable bearers include film director Paul Greengrass and baseball player Jim Greengrass.
From one of two placenames, located near the Anglo-Scottish border. Named with Old English grēne
, 'green' and halw
, 'hill, mound'.
From Old English grēne
"green" and lēaf
"leaf", presumably applied as a nickname, the significance of which is now lost.
habitational name from any of various minor places, for example in Staffordshire, so named from Old English grene ‘green’ + leah ‘woodland clearing’.
Originally given to a person who lived near a grassy path, from Middle English grene
"green" and weye
"road, path" (cf. Way
Topographic name for someone who lived in a dense forest, from Middle English grene
"green" and wode
"wood", or a habitational name from a minor place so named, as for example Greenwood in Heathfield, East Sussex.
GRIMKÉ English (American)
Meaning unknown. This was the surname of Sarah (1792-1873) and Angelina (1805-1879) Grimké, sisters who opposed slavery and supported women's rights.
From a diminutive of Grice
, which was originally a nickname for a grey-haired man, derived from Middle English grice
meaning "grey" (itself from Old French gris
, apparently of Germanic origin).
Name for someone who lived by a grove or thicket, Middle English grove
, Old English graf
Probably a Middle English metathesized form of the Old French personal name Gondri
GRYLLS English (Rare)
There was an old and distinguished family of Grylls of Tavistock (Devon) and Lanreath (Cornwall) in the 17th century; two high sheriffs of the county then bore the name. The manor of Gryils (commonly mispronounced Garles), near the rocks called the Gryils or Garles, from which they probably derive their name, is in the parish of Lesneweth in that county.
from Middle English gojon, gogen, Old French gougon ‘gudgeon’ (the fish) (Latin gobio, genitive gobionis), applied as a nickname or perhaps as a metonymic occupational name for a seller of these fish... [more]
Nickname for a stranger or newcomer to a community, from Middle English g(h)est meaning "guest", "visitor" (from Old Norse gestr, absorbing the cognate Old English giest).
From the Middle English personal name Gullake
, a descendant of Old English Gūthlāc
, literally "battle-sport".
From a medieval nickname for a greedy person (from Old French goulafre
"glutton"). Jonathan Swift used it in his satire 'Gulliver's Travels' (1726), about the shipwrecked ship's surgeon Lemuel Gulliver, whose adventures "offer opportunities for a wide-ranging and often savage lampooning of human stupidity and vice."
From a nickname or byname from Middle English gome
, Old English guma
, an Old French personal name introduced to Britain by the Normans, composed of the Germanic elements gund
"battle" and rīc
English habitational name from a place in Wootton Fitzpaine, Dorset, Gupehegh in Middle English. This is named with the Old English personal name Guppa
(a short form of Guðbeorht
"battle bright") + (ge)hæg
Occupational name for a guide, Old French gui
(a derivative of gui(d)er
"to guide", of Germanic origin).