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Surname Meanings P-S


Surnames: P-S

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Pagnozzi is an Italian diminutive form of the nickname Compagni or Compagno, which meant "good neighbor." Compagnon is the French version, and Pagni is another Italian form. Other diminutives are Pagnotti, Pagnussi, Pagnutti .

Palmer is an English nickname for the man who had been on a pilgramage to the Holy Land, from Middle English, Old French palmer, paumer (they generally brought back a palm branch as proof of the journey's success. Variations are Palmar, Paumier, Palmes . Cognates exist in several languages.

Pare is likely a version of the Scottish place name Peart, which is found throughout Northern England and Scotland, and derived from the place called Pert on the North Esk near Montrose, which was so-named for a Pictish/Celtic term for a woods or copse.

Paris/Parris : French Place Name...Paris is the name taken by many who originated in that French city. Parrish is a variation of the English Place name Parish - the local name given to the man from Paris. The name of the French city came from a Gaulish tribe which was recorded in Latin sources as Parisii -- the original meaning of which was unfortunately lost along the way. Somewhat rarely - the name derived from Paris as a medieval given name, likely an Old French version of Patrick or associated with the Trojan prince Paris whose name has been speculated as having originated with the form Voltuparis or Assoparis (Hawk). The confusion over the -S- in Paris and the -SH- in Parish was compounded over folk etymological association with the church parish, which was a Middle English term. Foundlings left at the church for adoption were sometimes given Parish as a surname during the 17th and 18th centuries -- much later than most surnames were adopted in most of Europe. Parris is another variation found among the English -- cognates of the name appear in several other languages.

Parker : English Occupational name for the man who was the gamekeeper at the medieval park.

Parlee is an English place name derived from Old English par = pear + an atypical spelling of the Old English element leah = wood, clearing. The term leah came to mean meadow, so Parlee could be literally "pear meadow" or in the strict sense of the Old English translation "pear woods." The man who lived in the clearing where the pear trees grew could have been known as Parlee.

Parks : English Occupational name, along with Park, for the dweller in the enclosed woods which was stocked with game for royal use.

Parton, an English place name from several towns called that in medieval England whose names derived from Old English peretun = pear orchard, which was derived from OE pere = pear + tun = enclosure. The pronunciation of -er changed to -ar during the Middle Ages, although some words reverted back through etymological correction.

Patrick is an English patronymic name, from the given name derived from Latin Patricius = son of a noble father, member of the patrician class or aristocracy. Pattrick is a variation, and cognates include (French) Patric, Patrice, Patris, Patrix, Patry; (Portuguese) Patricio. Diminutive forms are Padan, Padyn, Pedan, Patricot , and Patrigeon. McPhedric is a Scottish Patronymic form.

Patton (not to be confused with Pattin, Patten) is a variation of the English and Scottish surname Pate, which is derived from Pat or Patt, a shortened form of Patrick. Patton is a diminutive form of Pate (which occasionally is a nickname for a man with a bald head); Patey is another diminutive form. Pates, McPhaid, McPhade, McFade, McPhate, McFait, McFeate are all patronymic variations of Pate.

Paul is the English, French, German, and Flemish/Dutch patronymic name from the Latin name Paulus = small, a popular name throughout Christian Europe. It was the name adopted by Saul, a Pharisee of Tarsus, who converted to Christianity and was a industrious missionary during the Roman Empire. Numerous early saints bore the name as well, contributing to its popularity. English variations are Paull, Paule, Pawle ; Pol is a French version; Pahl, Pohl and Paulus are found in German heritage, and the Flemish/Dutch were Pauwel or Pauel.

Pavey , an English matronymic name from the female given name Pavia , which is of unknown origin. Listed variations include Pavy, Pavie , and cognate forms include Pavie, Pavy, Pavese . Pavett, Pavitt are diminutive forms.

Payne : is a derivative of Pain, which is an English Patronymic name from the Middle English given name Pain. It comes from the Old French Paien , which came from Latin Paganus -- where pagus meant outlying village. To make the long story short (or to wrap up an already long explanation of its origin), Pain was a civilian instead of a soldier and lived in an outlying area. Derivatives include Paine, Payne, Payen and Payan .

Pawlik/Pawlicki/Pawlak/Pavlik : Polish Patronymic Name...derive from the given name Paul, which was a popular item around the surname-acquiring period. When the spelling used a V as in Pavlik -- the name has the same derivation, but its origin would be Ukrainian.

Payton is an English Place name from Peyton in Sussex, which got its name from the Old English given name Poega + tun = settlement, enclosure, meaning literally" Poega's settlement."

Pearce : and its variations: Pearce, Pearse, Piers, Peers, Perce, Persse, Perris , (and others) are derived from the English given name Piers, which is a form of the name Peter.

Pearsall /Piersol : (and its variations) refer to a medieval English place called Per's Valley and one who lived there or nearby often became known as Pearsall. Requested by Nicki Piersol-Freedman

Peeler is generally a variation of the English nickname Peel, which described the tall, thin man, from Anglo-Norman-French pel = stake, pole. Peele, Peale, Piele, Pelle are variations.

Pendley, Penley, Penly, Pendly are spelling variations of the English place name derived from Old English elements penn = hill, head + leah = wood, clearing. It described the location where those who came to bear the name made their home.

Pennebaker/Pennebakker/Pannebakker : Dutch Occupational Name...Pennebaker evolved from the Dutch penne = tile + bakker = baker; literally tile-baker. The Pannebakker family shield motto is: Mein Siegel ist ein Ziegel - "My Seal is a Tile." September 15, 1463 an edict in Holland forbade thatch and straw roofing and required tiles, making the tile-making a busy trade. Submitted by Paul Pannebakker

The name Pennock is an English place name that is synonymous with the word hillock, which described the man who lived at the small hill. The name is comprised of the elements penn + ock; penn was a Breton word meaning hill that was absorbed into Old English -- ock is a suffix added to words to create a diminutive form. Pennock is literally "hill little" or "small hill" and would have described a recognizable location to describe the man who lived at that place.

Perham is an English place name for the man from any of the several locations by that name, which recieved their name from Old English peru = pear + ham = homestead. Perram is a variant, and several of the locations are now called Parham as a result of Middle English pronunciation development.

Perkins : is a Welsh Patronymic name derived from the given name Peter, which was introduced into the area with William the Conqueror. There were many other varieties in England, but Perkins was most popular in Wales.

Perry : Henry was a popular name during the Middle Ages when surnames were adopted, and one of its pet forms was Harry. To point out a lad who was the 'son of Harry' a person might say "Yon is ap Harry." As a result, ap Harry eventually evolved into Perry for some who adopted the surname. It's an English Patronymic name. Requested by Sean Perry.

Persch is a diminutive form of Petren, which is the German form of Peter, a name derived from the Greek petros = rock, stone. Perschke, Persicke, Perscke, Persich, Persian, Pichan, Pecht, Peche, Peschmann are among the many diminutive German forms of Slavic origin.

One of the most popular given names throughout Christian Europe during the Middle Ages was Peter. It appeared in numerous languages and in numerous forms. Pietrzak is a Polish patronymic form of the name which was derived from Greek petros = rock, stone.

Petrie : Scottish Patronymic name that is derived from the given name Peter. As a given name, Peter became popular after the Norman conquest of England, and Peter was often used as a surname by itself. Petrie is a dimunitive form of Peter, that was more popular in Scotland.

Phelps : In the 11th, 12th, and 13th centuries were French kings named Philip, which helped to popularize the name. Among the English variations of Philip, which means 'lover of horses' is Phelps.

Phillips/Philips : Philip was an extremely popular name in medieval times -- Philip was one of the apostles, and four French kings were named Philip from the 11th to the 13th century. The name -- which means 'lover of horses' -- came into England from France at the time of the conquest. Philips is patronymic (named after the father Philip, whose sons would be referred to as Philip's sons). The common Welsh and English version of the surname is spelled with two l's, giving the descendants the surname Phillips. Phillips is a variation of the English, French, Dutch/Flemish, and Danish/Norwegian Patronymic name Phillip/Philip from the Greek name Philippos and elements philein = to love + hippos = horse. Its popularity seems to have been due to medieval stories about Alexander the Great, whose father was Philip of Macedon. Variations are Philipp, Phillip, Philp, Phelp, Phalp (English); Philippe, Phelip, Felip, Phelit, Philip, Phalip (French); Filip (Flemish/Dutch). There are numerous other diminutive, patronymic, and cognative forms.

Pian is an Italian cognate form of the French place name Plain, which described the man who lived on a plateau or plain, derived from Old French plan > Latin planum, plannus = flat, level. Variations of Plain are Plan, Plaine, Duplain, Duplan, Duplant . Other cognates are Plane (English); Plana, Planas, Planaz (Provencal); La Piana, Piana, Lo Piano, Pian, Piani, Del Piano, Delle Piane, Pianese (Italian); Piangiani (Tuscany); Llano, Llanos (Spain); Planas, Plana (Catalan). Diminutive forms include Planet, Planeix, Pianelle, Pianel, Pianeau (French); Pianella, Pianelli, Pianetti (Italian).

Pickard is an English place name that described the man from Picardy in Northern France, which adjoins Normandy, where William the Conqueror left to take on the English, and where many English surnames are derived. Picard (as in Capt. Jean-Luc Picard of the Starship Enterprise, quoth he, "Engage!") is a French cognate, as are Piccard, Piquard, Picart, Piquart, Lepicard. Italian cognates are Piccardi, Piccardo ; German versions are Pikhardt, Pikhart.

Piercy: a variation of the English (from the Normans) place name Percy, from any of the several places called that in Northern France, from the Gallo-Roman given name Persius + the local suffix -acum, and was given to the man who emigrated from there, likely as one of the followers of William the Conqueror. Other variants are Percey, Persay, Pearcey, Pearsey, Piercey, Piercy, Pericey , and Pursey. William de Percy (1030-1096) was one such follower -- he accompanied William the Conqueror and settled in the Northumbrian area, where his family was instrumental in holding the English border against the Scots.

Pillsbury : English place name and refers to Pil's fort, a place of safety during medieval times. Requested by Peter Hebert

Pine is the English place name that described the man who lived near a conspicuous pine tree, or grove of pines, from Old English pin = pine > Latin pinus. Occasionally, it may have been a nickname for the tall, thin man who resembled such a tree (those green arms may have had something to do with that -- kidding ...) Pyne is a variation. Cognates and Diminutive forms also exist for the name.

Pingree --according to Hanks & Hodges -- is the French nickname for the man who was fond of playing the old game of cockles. If anyone knows what that game is, please let me know so I can include a description. It isn't in any of my references.

Pinson : It's an English nickname based on an Old French word -- pinson -- which meant finch, and was used to describe a cheerful person.

Pinter is listed among the variations of the Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, and Sefardic Jewish nickname Pinto, for the person with a blotchy complexion, or salt-and-pepper hair. It is derived from the pinto = mottled, from Latin pingere = to paint. Pintado is a Spanish variation; Pinta is found in Portugal, Pintus, Lo Pinto, LaPinta are Italian, Pinter is an Anglicized version of the Jewish version of the name.

Pitt : English Place name...OE pytt ; a pit, hollow, or low valley

The place name for the man who lived near a quick-set fence was Place, derived from Old French pleis > Latin plectere = to plait, interweave. Plex, Plez, Plesse, Play, Place, Leplay, Deplaix, Duplaix, Duplay, Dupleix, Plessis Plessix, Plessy, Platzmann, Plazman, Van der Plaetse are all versions. Place was also the name for the man who lived near the English main market square, and occasionally, the name for the fishseller or the thin man (thin as a fish).

Poe : is a variant of the English nickname Peacock , which described the man who seemed to strut about, or was brightly fashioned. The Flemish version is DePauw/Depaeuw , and the Dutch version is DePaauw . Requested by Cynthia Lux.

Poisson is a French diminutive version of an Italian Occupational name ( Pesce ) which was given to the fisherman, or fish seller. Peschi is a variation of Pesce , and other French versions include Poisson, Poissonnet, Poissenot, Poyssenot .

Poll : is an ancient Gaelic word that means 'pool, pit' and the name Poll would describe the man who lived near the deep pool of water. It's a Place name of Gaelic origin.

Pollard : derived from two sources: the Englishman with a closely-cropped or shorn head was described as 'pollard' and for some the name stuck as an English Descriptive name. Other Pollard families were those who lived near the head or the end of the lake, and wound up with an English Place name.

Pollina is an Italian diminutive cognate of the French occupational name Poule , the name that described the breeder of chickens or -- occasionally -- a nickname for a timid person, from Old French poule = chicken > Latin pulla = young bird. Italian cognate forms are Pollo, Pudda, Puddu ; the English cognate is Poulter. French variations are Poul, Poulle . Other diminutive forms are Poulin, Poulet, Poullet, Poulot, Poullot, Pouleteau (French); Polini, Puddinu (Italian).

Pomeroy is a French Place name given to the person from any of the several locations in France by that name, generally spelled similar to pomeroie , which was Old French for 'apple orchard.' The Pomeroy family of Devon can trace their heritage to a close associate of William the Conqueror, Ralph de la Pomerai, whose descendants lived for over 500 years in a castle near Totnes, Devon.

Pooler is likely an Anglicized spelling of the German Pfuhler, or a variation of the English surname Pool. Pfuhler is the Germanic version of Pool, which is a place name that described the man who lived by a pool of water, or pond. Among the Dutch, Pool is an ethnic name that described the man from Poland. English variations are Poole, Poolman, Polman . Cognates are Pfuhl, Pfuhlmann, Pfuhler (German); Pohl, Pohlmann, Puhlmann, Puhl, Pohler (Low German); Van de Poel, Van der Poel, Peolman (Flemish/Dutch).

Poncelet is a French diminutive cognate form of the English (of Norman origin) name Points, which comes from the Medieval given name Ponche . That name can be traced back to Latin Pontius , which may have come from an Italian cognate of Quintus (fifth-born). Variations of Points are Poyntz, Punch . Other cognate forms are Pons, Ponce, Point (French); Ponzi, Ponzio, Ponzo, Punzi, Punzio, Punzo (Italian); Ponce (Spain); Poms (Dutch). Other diminutive forms include Pointel (English); Ponci, Poncin, Poncet, Punchet, Punchon (French); Ponzetti, Punzetti, Punzetto (Italian).

Poulain is a French cognate of the English occupational name Pullen, which described the horse-breeder or sometimes -- a nickname for the frisky person. It is derived from Old French poulain = colt > Late Latin pullamen, derived from pullus = young animal. Pulleine, Pulleyn, Pullin, Pullan are variations. Poullain, Poulan, Poulenc are other French cognates.

Poulin is a variation of the French occupational name Poule, which described the breeder or keeper of chickens (although it was also known as a nickname for the timid person). It is derived from Old French poule = chicken > Late Latin pullis = young bird. Poule, Poulle are variations. Cognates include Pollo, Pudda, Puddu (Italian); Poulter (English). Diminutive forms are Poulin, Poullet, Poulet, Poullot, Poulot, Pouleteau (French); Pollini, Puddini (Italian). Poulat, Poulas, Polloni, Poulard, Poulastre are other forms.

Poyner is an English nickname for the man who was good with his fists when involved in an argument, from the Old French poigneor = fighter, from Latin pugnator, from pugnare = to fight. Occasionally, the name is of Welsh origin, and is an aphetic form of the patronymic name ap'Ynyr (the Welsh used ap in the same fashion the Scots used Mc to indicate 'son of'). Variations are Poynor, Punyer . Bonner and Bunner are variants of the Welsh version.

Powers : English Descriptive name for the man who had little money. There were many more Powers and Poors in early times, than Richs.

Pratt : English Place name derived from the word used to describe a grassy field during early times. The man who lived there was sometimes referred to as Pratt. Requested by William Hopkins.

Preston is a Northern English Place name from the numerous locations, including Lancashire) derived from Old English preost = Priest + tun = enclosure, used to described a village held by the church or village with a priest.

Prestridge is an English place name derived from the elements preost = priest + hrycg = ridge, which would have described a location such as "ridge where the priest lives" or "ridge near the priest."

Pritchett is a diminutive variation of the English occupational name Pryke , which was the medieval term for the maker of pointed instruments, or occasionally, the nickname for the tall, thin man. It is derived from Middle English prike, prich = point. Diminutive forms include Prickett, Pritchet, Pritchett, Pritchatt .

Prochazka : is a Czech Occupational name for the travelling tradesman, especially the travelling butcher. It is derived from Czech prochazet =to walk, stroll, or saunter. It is among the most common Czech surnames.

Proctor is an English occupational name that described the steward, and is a contracted form of the Old French word procurateour < Latin procurator = agent. The term was used for solicitors, and officials such as collectors of taxes, and agents licensed to collect alms for lepers and monks. Procktor, Procter, Prockter are variations.

The root for Prosser was the given name Rhosier, which was the Welsh form of the name Roger (they called it Rosser). Roger is derived of Germanic elements hrod = reknown + geri = spear, and was introduced to the islands by the invading Normans. The Welsh patronymic designator was ap, and ap'Rhosier and ap'Rosser became Prosser, the reduced form of the name the same way as did many of the Welsh names beginning with -P-.

Prout is a variation of the English nickname Proud, which described the man considered to be vain, or haughty-acting. It is derived from Middle English prod, prud = proud. Proude is another variation.

Provost : English Occupational name...During the Middle Ages serfs elected one of their own to oversee the work on their lord's manor. One title for the position was Provost. It's considered an Occupational name. Requested by Nick Stamos.

Among the Welsh, ap is the patronymic designator similar to Mac, Fitz, and O' among other nationalities. Pugh is the reduced form of ap Hugh , meaning "son of Hugh" in the same fashion as many of the Welsh names beginning with the letter -P-. Hugh was a Norman name introduced into England by followers of William the Conqueror. It is actually a shortened form of several Germanic names with the initial element hug = heart, mind, spirit. St. Hugh of Lincoln, who died in the year 1200, founded the first Carthusian monastery in England and helped popularize the name.

Pruitt : English Descriptive Name...Pruitt is a diminutive derivative of an old English term meaning bold, impetuous, brave, soldier. Requested by: Paul Pruitt

Punnett : One version is that it comes from Pugnator or a person who is a fist fighter or boxer. We have tracked back to the 1600's in Punnetts Town in Sussex England, but believe the family originally came from Belgium or Normandy. Submitted by Chris Punnett.

Purcell is an English occupational name for the man who herded pigs, or occasionally, an affectionate nickname derived from Old French pourcel = piglet. In France it is Pourcel, Pourceau ; in Italy it is Porciello, Porcelli, Purcelli . Purcel (Rumanian). Diminutive forms are Porcellino, Porcellini, Porcellotto, Porcelletti .

Putnam : English Place Name...Many English villages were described by attributes, and some surnames were adaptations of those locales. Putta's Homestead was one such settlement and some residents described themselves as being Putnam. Requested by: Glenn Bradford

Pye is indeed an English surname, primarily found in the Lancashire and E. Anglia areas. It is a nickname given to the man who was especially talkative, or occasionally, given to the man who was prone to pilfering things, as in magpie/magpye. Pye was also occasionally the name given to the baker who specialized in pies. In Italy, the name was known as Pica.


Quaite, Quate, Quade, McQuade, MacQuaid, McQuoide : Scottish/Irish Patronymic Name...The Gaelic given name Wat (pronounced wait, and the same as Walter). The name Walter was brought by the Normans and derived from Wald , meaning rule, and theri , meaning army. Mac Uaid was the son of Wat (Walter). The Anglicized version took many forms, some of which dropped the Mac, and many of which arranged the vowels in combination.

Queen: See McQueen.

Quigg/Quigley/Quigley/Quick/Quickley : English Nickname for an agile person, from Middle English quik or Old English cwic = lively. The surname is also sometimes derived from the place where cinch grass grew – it was a quick-growing grass. Quick and its variations were also derived occasionally from Old English cu = cow + wic = outlying settlement, for the man at the dairy farm.

Quinton : English Place Name...Quinton was the name given to several locations in Gloucester, Northants, and Birmingham that derived from Old English cwen = queen + tun = enclosure, settlement. The name is patronymic when derived from the Old French given name Quentin (Quintin) from Latin Quninus and Quintus meaning fifth(born). The name was introduced by the Normans but never really caught on. Finally, Quinton sometimes derived from a Norman location named for St. Quentin of Amiens, a third Century Roman missionary. Requested by Victoria Quinton.


Rabinovich and Ravinovitch are versions of the Jewish Status name Rabin from the Polish rabin = rabbi. Variations include Rabinerson, Rabinsohn, Robinsohn, Robinzon, Rabinow, Robinov, Rabinowicz and others.

Ragsdale : is an English Place name comprised of the elements rag = rough + dale = valley, for a literal translation of 'rough valley.' The letter -S- is added to many names and elements to make them easier to pronounce.

Ralph : Ralf de Tankerville was the chamberlain for William the Conqueror, and from his name a number of given names were derived. From Ralf came: Raff, Ralph, Rand, Randall, Randolph, Rankin, Ransom, Ranson, Rawlings, Rawson , and Rawle . Requested by Dave Rawle.

Ramey is a variation of the name Ram, which -- as a French name -- described the man who lived in a thickly wooded area, from the Old French term raim = branch. Ramey is considered a "diminutive" term -- somewhat like "little ram." Ramel, Ramelet, Rameaux, Rameau, Ramelot, Ramlot, Ramet are other variations of the French version of the surname Ram.

Ramirez : is a Spanish cognizant of Reinmar, a German Patronymic name from ragin = counsel + meri = fame. The Spanish version was Ramiro , from which the patronymic derivative Ramirez evolved.

Ramsey : is a Scottish place name in Essex and Huntingdonshire from Old English hramsa =wild garlic + eg =island or low land, for a literal meaning of 'wild garlic island.' Someone who lived near the spot where the wild garlic grew became known as Ramsey.

Randall/Randolph : English Patronymic name from the early given name Raedwulf, which means 'shield wolf.' It was popular in England before the Norman Conquest. The name eventually became Radulf and Randolph and Randall are among the derivatives. Requested by Jennifer Turnbull

Ray/Rey/Wray : English Nickname/Place Name...Ray is polygenetic in that it has several sources. One version is an English nickname from Old French rey or roy meaning king, to designate someone who had regal airs (not necessarily regal heirs!). It was also from the Middle English word ray which meant female deer (Ray -- a deer, a female deer...) and was given as a nickname to one who was timid. It also derived from the places Rye and Wray -- for people who were from there.

Rayfield is an English place name derived from Old English ryge = rye + feld = pasture, open country. It described the man who lived near the field where rye was grown.

Rayner/Raynor : French Patronymic name, from the Norman given name Rainer, which was derived from ragin = counsel + hari = army. Requested by Kathy Alsobrooks

Ready/Reed : Scottish Patronymic Name...of the Scotsman Reedie in Angus. Also, in some cases, a Descriptive English name, as in -- always ready. Sometimes, meaning the descendent of Little Read (red), the nickname for a redhead, or the pet form of Redmond "counsel, protection." Requested by: Kathleen Cocuzzo

Regarding Reavey, : it is an Irish name, derived from the Gaelic Riabhach, a nickname meaning 'grizzled.' Other forms of the name are McReavy, McCreavy, McCreevy, McCrevey, McKrevie, McGreavy, McGreevy, McGrievy, McGrevye, McGreave, Magreavy , and Magreevy.

Redman is polygenetic, derived independantly from surnames Read and Roth . When arriving from the former it originates from the Old English read = red and designated the man with the red hair or ruddy complexion. The softening of the -E- sound in OE read to modern English red is not well-explained. Variations of Read are Reade, Reed, Redd, Reid, Redman, Readman, Ride, Ryde, and Ryder . Roth is the German Nickname and Jewish Assumed Ornamental Name for the person with red hair, derived from German rot = red. Variants are Rothe, Rother , and the Jewish variations are Roter, Roiter, Royter , among others.

Reidenbach is a German and Jewish (Ashkenazic) place name derived from Old High German elements that include bah = stream. The -en is a weak dative ending using after prepositions and definitive articles in Old High German. The "reid" part is likely a variant pronunciation of of OHG rot = red, and may be indicative of a Jewish ornamental surname combining the elements rot = red + en = dative ending + bah = stream.
It may also have been a purely geographic related name that referred to the "red stream" however unlikely that may seem.

Reece : There was a family in the south of Wales that favored the given name Rhys: one was Rhys ap Tudor (Rhys the son of Tudor) who led men in stopping the advance of the Normans into South Wales. His grandson was Rhys ap Gruffydd (Rhys of Gruffydd) who became so powerful that he was appointed King's Judiciar for Wales by King Henry II of England. As heroes, they were responsible for a lot of given names, of which some translated into surnames. Reece , Reese , and Rice were all derived as Welsh Patronymic names from the given name Rhys .

Reedy is likely a spelling variation of Reedie, a Scottish place name for the so-named location in the former county of Angus, the name of which has uncertain origins. Readie, Ready, Reidie, Reidy are other spelling variations.

Reichenberg is a Ashkenazic Jewish ornamental surname derived of the elements reich(en) = rich + berg = hill -- literally 'rich hill.' Ornamental surnames were taken for their pleasing sound rather than any significant meaning, and occured when nationalities such as the European Jews and the Swedes adopted surnames in the 1800's.

Reichert is a variation of the patronymic name Richard, found among the English, French, German, Flemish, Dutch, and derived from a Germanic given name of the elements ric = power + hard = hardy, brave. Variations of Richard are Ritchard, Ricard, Riccard, Rickard, Rickerd, Rickert (English); Ricard, Riguard, Rigard (French); Reichhardt, Reichardt, Reichert, Richardt (German); Rickaert, Rykert (Flemish).

Reid/Reed : Scottish Patronymic Name...English nickname from OE read (red) for red hair or complexion.

Renfro is a Scottish place name from the so named location that was named with Gaelic elements that meant "flowing stream." The man who emigrated from there to a new location was sometimes called that as a way to differentiate him from others in his new town who had the same first name.

Reismann is a variation of Reis , the German place name for the man who lived in an overgrown area, from Middle High German rís = undergrowth, brushwood.

Remington is an English place name from Rimington in Yorkshire, which was name as "settlement on the rim, or border." The man who moved away from a location was often known to his new neighbors by his place of origin.

Renaud is a variation of the English patronymic name Reynold, deriving from a Germanic based given name composed of the elements ragin = counsel + wald = rule. Scandinavian settlers first brought the name to England in the Old Norse form that evolved into Ronald, but the French version was reinforced with William the Conqueror. Variations of the English form are Reynell, Rennell, Rennoll, Rennold, Renaud , and Renaut. French Cognates are Reynaud, raynaud, Rainaud, Reynal, Reinaud, Regnault, Reneaud , Reneaultr, Renaut, Rigneault, Renaux . There are numerous other forms and variations.

Reyes : is from the Old French rey=king, and is a nickname for the man who carried himself in a regal fashion, or sometimes - a timid person.

Rheinecker is a German place name derived from the Germanic elements Rhein = Rhine + ecke = corner. The name Eck or Ecker generally describes the man who lived at the corner of two streets in town, or the corner of an area of land. Rhein described the man who lived on the Rhine River. Rheinecker would be the man who lived at a corner, or bend, of the Rhine.

Richey, Richie , and Rich (when not a nickname for the man with money, or ironically for the poor man) are diminutive forms of the English patronymic name Richard; found among the English, French, German, Flemish, Dutch, and derived from a Germanic given name of the elements ric = power + hard = hardy, brave. Variations of Richard are Ritchard, Ricard, Riccard, Rickard, Rickerd, Rickert, Rickett, Ricket (all English versions). There are cognates and patronymic forms as well, in several languages.

Richmond : English Place Name. William the Conqueror brought many French names with him, including Richemont "lofty mountain" which was Anglicized to Richmond.

Riddle is a spelling variation of Riddell, the Scottish and North English place name for the man from Ryedale in North Yorkshire, in the valley (dale) of the river Rye. Riddel, Riddle, Riddall, Ridal, Rideal are variations.

Rideout is a variation of the English surname Ridout - which is of uncertain origin, but discussed as an occupational nickname for a rider, from Middle English riden = to ride + out = out, forth; on the other hand, that could be fancied folklore! Ridoutt is a variation.

Ries is a German nickname for the man who was short and stocky, one of many Germany surnames that evolved from such personal descriptions.

Rigg/Riggs/Ridge/Ruge English Place Name...The person who lived at the ridge or at a range of hills was known in England by various names, including: Rigg, Riggs, Ruge, and Ridge. These names also derive from small settlements by these names within the British Isles. Requested by Bill Rigg

The name Rind is a Scottish place name that described the man who lived during medieval times near a minor location in the former county of Perthshire, Scotland called Rhynd, which came from the Gaelic term roinn = point of land. As with most names taken from Gaelic origins, the spellings vary widely, but Rhynd, Rhind, Rhyne, are common variations.

Roach: an English place name for the man who lived by a rocky crag or outcropping. Roche is an Irish variation. Cognate forms are Roche, Roc, Laroche, Desroches (French); Roca, Rocques, Larocque, Larroque (Provencal); Roca, Rocha (Spanish).

The Normans brought the French given name Robert to England at the time of the Conquest. It means 'fame, bright' and was derived from the Old German Hrodebert. Rob, Hob, and Dob were pet forms of the name, and from Rob a number of surnames were derived. The patronymic forms of the name include Roberts and Robertson.

The Normans brought the French given name Robert to England at the time of the Conquest. It means 'fame, bright' and was derived from the Old German Hrodebert. Rob, Hob, and Dob were pet forms of the name, and from Rob a number of surnames were derived -- including the English Patronymic name Robinson. Other versions are Robart (English), Robart, Robard, Rebert, Rospars (French), Ropartz (Brittany), Flobert, Flaubert (also French from a variation), Robbert, Rubbert, Ropert, Ruppert (Low German). Cognates include Roubert, Roubeix (Provencal), Roberti, Roberto, Ruberti, Ruberto, Ruperto, Luberti, Luberto Luparti, Luparto (Italian), Roberto (Portuguese), Rupprecht, Rupprecht, Rauprich (German), and Robberecht (Flemish).

McCroan is likely derived as a Scottish patronymic name, Anglicized from the Gaelic Ruadhan, which was a diminutive form of ruadh = red. Mac, of course, is the Gaelic term for "son of" and in a number of cases the spellings of the names carried the "c" from Mac into the base name.
Ruane is found as an Irish name as well, with other Anglicized versions from Gaelic that include O'Ruane, O'Rowane, Roan, Rowan, O'Roan, Rouane, Roane, Rewan, Ryoan, Raun, Roon .

Roch: a French patronymic name from a Germanic given name which may have originally meant 'crow' or may have come from Old English hroc = rest.. Variations are Roz, Rose . Cognates are Ruocco, Rocchi, Roque, Rochus, Ruocco, Rocci Roque is the Portuguese version. Roch and Rochus are found among Low German surnames. .

Rodney was first recorded as Rodenye, and was a medieval settlement in the marshes of England near Markham. The man who emigrated from there to a new location was sometimes described by the name of his former home. Rodenye was named from an Old English given name -- Hroda -- with the suffix eg = island, or dry land. It is literally translated as "Hroda's island."

Rodriguez is a Spanish version of the given name Hrodrick, comprised of the Germanic elements hrod = reknown + ric = power. The Spanish form of the given name is Rodrigo , and the Patronymic form is Rodriguez, meaning 'son of Rodrigo.'

The name Rogier was introduced into England by followers of William the Conqueror and the name Roger developed as a surname among the English, French, Catalan, and Low Germans. Variations include Rodgier, Rogger (English); Rodger (Scottish); Rosser (Wales); Rogier, Rogez (French); Rogger, Rottger, Rottcher, Rodinger (Low German). Numerous cognate forms exist, as do patronymics, which include Rodgers, Rogers, Rogerson, Rodgerson , and many others.

Rogers : English/French Patronymic name from the given name Roger which was brought to England by the Normans as Rogier. Its elements are hrod = renown + geri = spear, or `reknowned spearman.' Requested by Darryl Rogers

Roke is an English place name, derived from the Middle English phrase "atter oke" which meant, "at the oak." A misdivision of the phrase sent the -r- to the second syllable, resulting in Roke, often spelled Rock or Roake. The addition of the -er generally designates an occupational name, and the Roker, Rocker, Rooker, Rucker (various spellings) was the spinner of wool or maker of distaffs, from the Middle English word roc = distaff > Old Norse rokkr.

Rollins is a patronymic (from a diminutive form)version of the name Rollo, which is a Latinized form of the name Rou or Roul, which was a Norman form of Rolf. Rolf has its origin in Germanic elements hrod = renown + wulf = wolf. When written in official documents in Medieval times, Rou/Roul was commonly Latinized. Roll, Rolle are variations. Rollin is a diminutive form, and Rollins describe the son of Rollin.

Romaine is a variation of the English, French, Rumanian, Catalan, Polish, Ekrainian, and Belorussian surname Roman, from the Latin given name Romanus , which was the name of several early saints and contributed to its early popularity. Occasionally, it is found as a place name for the man from Rome. Variations are Romain, Romaine, Romayne, Romayn (English), Romain (French for the place name), Roma (Catalan), Romanski (Poland). For the place name, Rome, Roome, Room are English variations. Romano, Romani are Italian cognates; Romeign, Romign, Romeyn are the Dutch forms.

Roncin, a French occupational name for the man in charge of horses used as pack animals, from Old French roncin = workhorse.

If Rone is of Irish heritage, it is likely another Anglicized version of the Gaelic O'Ruadhain, which meant "descendant of Ruadhan " which was a given name that meant "red." Ruane is the commonly found version, with variations O'Ruane, O'Rowane, O'Roan, Roan, Roane, Rouane, Rowan, Rewan, Royan, Raun, Roon .

Rosine is a variation of the English, French, and German surname Rose, from the name of the flower, and as a place name for the man who lived near where they grew, or in the town, for the man who lived at the house with the sign of the rose. Numerous variations exist, as do patronymic, and diminutive forms.

Ross is an English and Scots place name from a place near Caen in Normandy, which was the original home of the family ‘de Ros’ who were located in Kent by the year 1130. Some names have more than one origin depending on the family, and Ross is one of those. Occasionally, it comes from a Gaelic word ros that meant ‘promontory’ or ‘upland’ and there were several locales named with this meaning in mind. Also, somes Ross families are descended from an ancestor who bore the Germanic given name Rozzo, which meant ‘reknown’ in its original sense. Finally, the German breeder or keeper of horses was sometimes called Ross, from the Southern German word ross = horse, or the man who lived at the house displaying the sign of the horse might also come to bear this name. Requested by Drew Ross

Rostan is likely a variation of the French surname Rostaing, from a Germanic personal name composed of the elements hrod = reknown + stan = stone. Variations of the name include Roustaing, Rostang, Rostand, Roustan .

Round/Rounds : When surnames were adopted, sometimes nicknames stuck as in the case of Round and Rounds, which were English Descriptive surnames for the person who was about as wide as he was tall.

Rowell is a variation of the English place name Rothwell, which described the man who emigrated from any of the several so-named locations (there were Rothwell settlements in Lincolnshire and Northamptonshire, among others). Rowell is occasionally derived from a location in Devonshire called Rowell, from Old English ruh = rough, overgrown + hyll = hill. It would have described the man who came from that village. Sometimes, Rowell is simply a variation of the given name Rowe, a shortened form of Rowland. It would have described the son of a man by that name.

Rucker is a variation of the English occupational name Rock, for the man who spun wool or made distaffs, from the Middle English term rok = distaff, from Old Norse rokr. Other variations include Rocker and Rooker. The name Rock is generally a place name for the man who lived by a notable boulder or outcrop, from Middle English rocc = rock, or a place name for the man who lived at a settlement by that name. Rocke, and Rocks are variations of the place name.

I don't have Rudderham listed as such, but as an English name, the suffix -ham is taken from Old English 'holm' meaning island, or 'dry place in a fen.' It is used in the case of Place name, which are drawn from a specific locations. I don't know which island or dry spot is described by Rudder exactly, but the Middle English word 'rudde' meant 'red' or 'ruddy,' which could easily have Rudderham as a description for the man who lived at the 'red island.'

Rummler is a variation of the Low German, Dutch, and Flemish nickname Rommel, from Middle Low German rummeln = to make a noise or create a disturbance. It was used to describe the obstreperous person. Variations are Rommele, Rommler, Rummel, Rummele, Rummler .

Rundle : In the Middle Ages, when surnames were being adopted, some were Nicknames that neighbors or relatives pinned on a man to help identify him from others with the same first name. Sometimes they were cruel, sometimes not too bad. Rundle is a diminutive form of the Middle English rund which meant 'round' and was used to describe the man who was slightly round at the middle. Occasionally, Rundle identified the man who was from Rundale, in Shoreham parish, Kent, which derived its name from Old English rumig = roomy. Variants are Rundell , and Rundall .

Rush is an English place name that described the man who lived near a clump of rushes, from the Middle English word for that plant. When it is derived from Irish ancestry, Rush is an Anglicized form of the Gaelic O' Ruis, which meant "descendant of Ros" which is a given name from the word 'ros' = wood. In Ulster (the Northern counties of Ireland that were colonized by the Scots in 1610) the name was a translation of O'Fuada or O'Luachara, which are Anglicized as Foody and Loughrey. Variations are Rusher, Rischer ; cognates are Risch, Rische, Roschen, Roschman , and Ruys.

Russell is an English, Scottish, and Irish patronymic name from the given name Rousel, which was a common Anglo-Norman-French nickname for someone with red hair. Variations are Russel, Roussell, Rowsell, Russill . Cognates include Roussel, Rouxel, Leroussel, Rousseaux, Lerousseau (French); Rosselli, Rossiello, Russello (Italian); Rossell (Catalan); Rouselet, Rousselin, Rousselot, Rosselini are patronymic variations.

Rutledge is a variation of Routledge, an English and Scottish name of unknown origin. It is likely a place name, but the specific place has been lost to history. The locale Routledge Burn in Cambridgeshire received its name from a man, rather than the other way around. Rutledge, Rudledge, Rookledge, Rucklidge are known variations.

Rycenga : Dutch surname derived from German town of Rysum combined with Dutch ga = from to designate the man from Rysum, Germany. Variations include Rycenga, Rycinga, Ryzenga, Rijzinga, Rijzenga, Rijsinga, Rijsenga . Submitted by Doug Strohl


Sablun/Sabluns : Italian Place name, for the man from the place settled by the ancient Italic people of Central Italy. Requested by Doug Strohl

Sadler : aptly described the Englishman who was the maker of saddles and is derived from the Old English sadol . Varieties include Saddler and Sadlier , among others.

Sagle is likely a spelling variation of the surname Sagel, a French diminutive form of the English and French name Sage, derived from Old French sage = learned, sensible. Lesage is a French variation. Cognate forms include Saiave, Save (Provencal); Saggio, Savi, Savio, Lo Savio, Sapio (Italy). Diminutive forms include Sagel, Saget, Sageon, Sageot, Saivet, Saviotti, Savioli, Saviozzi.

Salisbury/Saluisbury/Saulsbury : English Place Name...Saulsbury is a variation of Salisbury (pronounced the same way as Saulsbury) which was an English city in Wiltshire that was derived from searu = armour and burh which meant town -- for a literal meaning of armour-town. People from their would sometimes use it as a surname. Requested by John Saulsbury Niblett

Salvoto is likely a variation of the Italian patronymic name Salvi , from the name Salvius = safe, from Latin salvus = safe, and borne by a number of early saints. Variations are Salvy, Sauvy, Salvo, Salvio . Diminutive forms include Salvetti, Savlinellli, Salvini, Salvinello, Salvioli, Salvucci, Salvioni, Salvione . A patronymic form is Di Salvo .

Samuel, which is an English, French, German, and Jewish patronymic name, from the given name Samuel, dertive from Hebrew Shemuel = name of God. Samwell is an English variation. Samel is found in Germany. Schmuel, Samuel, Shmil, Schmueli, Schmuely, Shmouel , and Schmoueli are among the Jewish variations. Diminutive and patronymic forms exist in many languages.

Samson is an English, French, German, Jewish, and Flemish/Dutch name derived from the Hebrew Shimshon < shemesh = sun, and derived from the bible as Samson. Generally the name was given during medieval times to honor the 6th Century Welsh bishop of that name who was venerated greatly across Europe, including those followers of William the Conqueror who popularized the name among the Bretons. English variations are Sampson, Samsin, Sansom, Sansome, Sansum, Sansam . Other variations include Sainson, Sanson (French); Simson (German), Shimshon, Shimsoni, Shimsony (Jewish); Cognate forms include Sansone, Sansoni, Sanson, Sanzone, Sanzonio, Sanzogno (Italian); Samso (Catalan).

Sanders is derived the long way around from the popular given name Alexander. An aphetic version is one where the initial syllable is lost through poor or lazy pronunciation, as in squire evolving from esquire . Alexander became Sander in parts of England, Scotland, and Germany, and the addition of the -S at the end denotes a Patronymic name, as in "son of."

Sandis/Sandison/Sandys/Sand : English/Scottish, German, Danish, Norwegian or Swedish place name for the man who lived near the sandy soil...and occasionally, the son of Alexander. Requested by Doug Strohl

Sanks may be derived from Sankey: an English place name derived from a so-named location in Lancashire named for a river, which may have been named from elements meaning "sacred, holy." Sankey is also derived from Irish heritage, when Anglicized from the Gaelic Mac Seanchaidhe (son of the Chronicler). Sanky is a variation. Sanks could be a patronymic form, meaning "son of Sankey."

Sanguino/Sanguinetti : Spanish/Italian Nickname...Both Sanguino and Sanguinetti have as their root -- sanguinis -- the Latin word for blood. The word was also appropriated by Medieval English and Medieval French as a root for words with blood as a reference. The Italians often placed diminutive suffixes on names, which would create "little blood" Sanguinetti. Descriptive names are somewhat rare among the Spanish-speaking languages, and those taken from colors are even more rare; Blanco (white), Castano, Moreno (brown), and Pardo (gray) are the only ones among the top one-thousand Latin American names.

Santi : English and French nickname derived from the word saint, which described a pious person.

Santiago is a Spanish and Portuguese place name that described the man who emigrated from any of the several locations so-named, which got their names from the dedication of their church to St. James, the patron saint of Spain. Tiago is an aphetic variation found in Portugal, arrived at by misdivision of the two parts of Santiago.

Sarsfield is an English place name as determined by the suffix -field. The identifying portion of the name may be derived from Old French saracen in the context of "the east, or toward the sunrise," or from the medieval given name Saher, which would have the name mean the "field in the east" or "Saher's field."

Satterfield is an English Place name for the man who lived in a hut in the open field.

Sauer : German Nickname...In England there were several names for the grave or austere man, including Sterne and Stark . Sauer is the German and Jewish (Ashkenazic) nickname for the cross or cantankerous person, and is derived from the German sauer = sour, from Middle High German sur, a cognate of English sour. Mental and moral qualities were often ascribed to people during Medieval times, with the differences in spelling and pronunciation due to the varying dialects and languages. Sauer and Wunderlich both designated the morose or moody man in Germany. Variants are Sauermann and Sauerman, as well as the Jewish variant Zoyer. Suhrmann and Suhr are both Low German cognate forms, while the Danish and Norwegian version is Suhr. Sauerle and Seyerlin are German diminutive forms.Requested by J. Sauer

Saunders : Scottish Patronymic name derived from the popular name Alexander. Three Scottish kings bore the name during Medieval times and there are a large number of variations taken from its pet forms. Sanders and Saunders are among those well represented in Scotland.

Savage is an English nickname for a 'wild or uncouth person,' derived from a Middle English version of Old French salvage , sauvage = untamed. Variants include Sauvage, Salvage, Savidge, Savege . French congitives are Lesauvage and Sauvage ; Italian = Salvaggi, Selvaggio, Salvatici , and French diminutive versions are Sauvageon, Sauvageau , and Sauvageot .

Schachet : a variation of Shoikhet , a Jewish (Southern Ashkenazic) name for the ritual slaughterer, from Yiddish shoykhet , with variants: Shoichet, Schochet, Shohet, Szoachet , and Schauchet .

Schechter : The Jewish (Ashkenazic) Occupational name for a ritual slaughterer is Schechter , of which there are a number of variations, derived from German Schachter (agent deriv. of schachten , from the Yid. verb shekhtn , whose stem is from Hebrew shachat - to slaughter. Variations include Schachter, Schaechter, Schacter, Schechter, Schecter, Szechter, Scherchner , and Schechterman .

Scheidtz/Sheets : German place name used to describe the man who lived by a boundary or a watershed. Requested by Robert Sheets

Schneider is a German and Jewish (Ashkenazic) occupational name for the tailor, from the German word Schneider , from Old German sniden = to cut. As a Jewish name it comes from the Yiddish shnayder from the same origins. It has roots in Old French tailleur as a translated version. Variations include Schneidermann (German); Snider, Snyder (which are Anglicized Jewish); Schneidman, Schneiderman (Jewish); Sznajderman (Jewish with Polish Spelling). Cognate forms are Snider, Sniderman, Snyder (English); Schniedr, Schnieder (Lowlands German); Sneyder, Snyder, Snieder (Flemish); Sneider, Sniyder (Dutch); Snajdr (Czech); Sznajder (Polish). Those names with an -S added are generally patronymic forms.

Schoff : German Occupational Name...German occupational name for a shepard and derived from the element schaf = sheep.

Schoener is a variation of Schön , the German nickname for the handsome man, from German schön = fine, beautiful, bright, refined. There are numerous variations including Schöne, Schöner, Schönert, Schönemann, Schönherr, Schon, Shon, Schoen, Scheiner, Scheyn, Shain, Szejn, Szajner . In addition, there are dozens of compound names taken up by the Ashkenzac Jewish families when the government began requiring the use of surnames. They are in this form: Schoenbach (lovely stream); Schoenbaum (lovely tree); Schoenbrot (lovely bread); Schoenherz (lovely heart) -- you get the idea.

Schreiber is the German occupational name for the clerk, from the German word schreiben = to write. Occasionally, it is found as a Jewish (Ashkenazic) name from Yiddish shrayber = writer, adapted from Hebrew Sofer = scribe. A variation of the German form is Schreber , and Szreiber, Schreibman, Schreibmann are Jewish variations. Schriever is a Low German cognate as are Schriever, Schriefer, Schriwer . Schrijver is the Dutch version, and Skriver is found among the Danes and Norwegians.

Schroeder : In Germany, the Schroeder drove a dray, which was a low, wheeled cart with detachable sides -- the drayman, or schroeder , was the driver.

Schwalb is usually a German nickname for the man who resembled (presumably in grace or swiftness, -- those crazy medieval namers!) the swallow. Back/Bach is the German reference to the man who lived by the stream so Schwalbach would be literally, "swallow stream" and could be a reference to a small river or stream named Schwalb (such a stream is located in England, known by the English term Swallow).

Schwertz is from schwert , a German Occupational name from the word for sword, which described the man who worked as an armourer for soldiers.

Scott is an English and Scottish ethnic name that was used to identify the man from Scotland, or the man who spoke Gaelic within Scotland. Cognate forms include Escot, Lescot, Lecot, Lescaut, Lescaux (French); Scoto, Scoti, Scuotto (Italian); Schotte, Schott (German); Schot (Flemish/Dutch); Skotte (Norwegian/Danish). Schottle is a German diminutive form and Scotts, Scotson are English patronymic versions.

Seigneur was an unflattering nickname given to the peasant man who gave himself airs, or carried himself above his station. Occasionally, it described the man who worked for a great lord. As an Italian cognate, it evolved into a title of respect for professional men such as notaries. Signorella is a diminutive form of the Italian versions, which include Signori, Signore, Sire , and Seri. Variations of the French form are Sieru, Lesieur, Lesieux, Sire , and Lesire.

Seal/Seale/Seales : English place name from Sale in Manchester, or as an occupational name for the maker of seals or saddles. It was also occasionally used as a nickname for a plump person.

Sells : English Place Name given to the man who lived in the rough hut that was designed for animals – that person was usually the herdsman who was in there watching over the animals. Requested by Jane Cowart

Saverance: I suspect it is derived from the same origin as Severn, one of Britain's most ancient river names, which flows from Wales through W. England to the Bristol Channel. The man who lived on the banks of the river was identified as Severn or Severne. Severence and Saverence may have indicated someone from there who emigrated to another area, in the sense of "from Severn." The river's name, by the way, means "slow-moving."

Scarisbrick is an English place name derived from the place near Liverpool that bears the name, which came to be called that through a combination of the Old Norse given name Skar added to the Old Norse vocabulary word brekka = slope, hill. The settlement at that location was literally "Skar's hill" or "Scar's brekka." Any man who formerly lived at that settlement, but moved to a new village could be described by his new neighbors by the reference to his former place of residence (to differentiate him from others already in the village with the same given name). Variations are Sizebrick, Siosbrick . Most who bear the name today are descended from Gilbert de Scaresbrec, who was lord of the manor of Scarisbrick in the 1200's.

Scull is an English nickname for the bald-headed man, from Middle English scholle = skull. Scullard as a name of English derivation would be a variation on that surname.

Sewell is polygenetic, in that it was derived from separate sources at the time names were being acquired. Some Sewells are wearing an English Patronymic name, and are descended from Sewel (victory, strength) and others have an English Place name, from an ancestor who lived near Bedfordshire or Oxfordshire -- both had places called Sewell, which designated 'seven wells.' Requested by Johnny Sewell.

Sexton is an English occupational name for the sexton or church maintainer, who also cared for the cemetery and dug the graves, from Old English sexteyn , derived through Old French from Latin sacristanus . When of known Irish origin, it is an Anglicized form of the Gaelic name O Seastnain , meaning descendant of Seastnan , whose name is of unknown origin. Sexten, Sexston, Sexon, Seckerson, Secretan, Saxton, Saxon are variations. Cognate forms include Sagreestain, Segrestan, Segreta, Segretain, Segretin, Secretain (French); Sacriste, Sacreste (Provencal); Sacristan (Spanish); Siegrist, Sigrist, Siegerist (German).

Shand is a Scottish name, Shands is the Patronymic version of the name, that is, the equivalent of "son of Shand." The origin of Shand itself is uncertain, but may be a shortened form of Alexander. It may also be a Place name from Chandai, located in Orne, and recorded in the 12th century. Shand : A rare but old surname in Scotland. The surname of Shand seems originally to have been confined to the north-eastern counties, particularly Aberdeenshire, and in that county more especially to the districts comprising the parishes of Turriff, Forgue, Drumblade, Auchterless, Culsalmond, Fyvie, King-Edward, and Gamrie. In old times it was variously spelled Schawand, Schaand (1696), Schande, Schand (1528), and Shand...We have also Shandscross given to certain lands on the estate of Delgarty. Magister Robert Schawnd was prebendary of Arnaldston, 1522. Probably French, Philibert de Shaunde was created earl of Bath in 1485; but nothing is known of him, except that he was a native of Brittany. The Surnames of Scotland by George F. Black, 1946

Sharma : in sanskrit means brahmin or uppercaste men. The caste system in ancient India consisted of Brahmin, Kshatryas, Vaishyas and Shudras. Brahmin = priestly or educated class, Kshatryas = kingly/warrior, vaishyas = business class, and Shudras = untouchables.

Sharp is an English Nickname given to the man who was keen, active, and quick; derived from the Middle English term scharp . Variations include Sharpe , and Shairp (the second of which is primarily Scottish). Scharff and Scharfe had the same meaning in Germany, while Scherpe is the Flemish and Dutch version.

Schaub is a shortened form of Schauber, which in itself is a variation of the German occupational name Schauer, the name given the official inspector -- of a market, for example, from the Middle High German schouwer > schouwen = to look, inspect. Other variations are Schauert, Schauber .

Schimmel is a German and Dutch nickname for the man with the grey or white hair, from Middle High German and Middle Dutch schimel, which denoted both 'mildew' and 'white horse.' Occasionally, when of Jewish heritage, it was assigned as a surname by a non-Jewish government official as an unflattering nickname.

Sevigny is a spelling variant of Sevigne (with apostrophe marks over both -e’s) which is a French place name that described the man from Ille-et-Vilaine and the place in that location called Sevigne.

Shaffer is a variation of Schaffer , the German occupational name for a steward or baliff, from German schaffen = go manage, run. Schaffner, Scheffner, Schaffer, Schofer are other variants.

Shaid is likely a spelling variation of Shade, the Scottish and English place name for the man who lived near a boundary, from Old English scead, from sceadan = to divide. Schade is another version.

Shank when a variation of Schenck is derived from Schenke , the German occupational name for the man who served as a cup-bearer, or server of wine, from Middle High German Scenko , from scenken = to pour out. The vocabulary word schenke came to be used as an occupational name for the innkeeper, and later it was used as an honorary title for a high court official. Variations are Shenk, Schenke, Schenker (tavern keeper). Shenker, Schenker, Sheinker, Sheinkar, Szenkier are all Ashkenazic Jewish versions (a common name, as at one time only Jews were allowed to sell alcohol in the Russian Empire).

Shanks is an English (primarily Northern England) and Scottish nickname for the man with the long legs, or strident gait, derived from Old English sceanca = shin-bone, leg. In Scotland, the word survived as a vocabulary word, but was replaced in the English standard by Old Norse leggr. Cruikshank was crooked legs, Longshanks was somewhat redundant, Sheepshanks was the man with the odd gait or walk. Shank is a variation of Shanks.

Shaulis is likely a variation of the English, French, German, and Italian patronymic name Saul, which is Hebrew for "asked for" (in the context of child, as in -- the child who was prayed for). Saul was the name of the first king of Israel, but was not a particularly common given name during medieval times -- likely due to the nature of his reign (somewhat troubled). Also, the name was somewhat stigmatized by the story of St. Paul who was originally named Saul, but changed his name when he converted and ended his persecution of Christians. As a result, the surname is comparatively rare. Variations include Sauil, Sawle, Saulle, Saule, Saulli, Saullo, Shaul, Shauli, Shauly, Shaulsky, Saulino, Shaulick, Shaulson, Shaulov, Shauloff.

Shaw : English place name for a copse or thicket, and would have been given to someone living near the thicket.

Sheffield and Shaffield are English Place names from Sheffield in South Yorkshire, so called from the river Sheaf, meaning 'boundary.'

Shelanskey isn't listed among my several references, but the -skey, -sky, -ski suffix is indicative of Eastern European place names, and generally found in Poland, where first uses were descriptive place names as in Zukowski = from Zukow. Later, the suffix was attached to many names as a status indicator, such as the prefix "Von" was used in Germany to indicate higher status. The name is likely Americanized from a name similar to Szellenski , derived from szell = wind, a place name that described the man who lived in a place that was habitually windy -- or Szczcinsky , which described the man from the seaport of Szczecin in NW Poland.

Shelley is an English place name that described the man from any of the so-named locations in Sussex, Essex, Suffolk, Yorkshire -- derived from Old English scylf = shelf + leah = wood, clearing. Shelly is a variation.

Sheridan is a fain Irish name, Anglicized from the Gaelic O' Sirideain , which meant "descendant of Siridean" whose name was of uncertain origin. Sherridan, O'Sheridane, O'Shiridane are variations.

Sherrer : Variation of Scheuer , a German Place name for the man who lived near the tithe-barn, or an Occupational name for the official who was responsible for collecting the tithes of the farmers, derived from Middle High German schiur (barn, granary). Versions include Scheurer, Scheurermann, Scheuerman, Scheier , and Schaier . Sherrer is likely an Americanized version, which was a common practice among immigrants.

Shields is a Patronymnic version of Shield , an English Occupational name for an armourer, the man who provided arms and implements to the soldiers. It is occasionally derived as a place name from a locale in Northumberland called Shields, and more infrequently is from the Old English term scieldu , which designated the shallow part of the river, and denoted the man who lived near there. Also, somewhat less frequently than all of the above, Shields can be an Anglicized version of O'Siaghail , which means "descendant of Siadhal " a Gaelic personal name of unknown meaning.

Shireman is an English occupational name for the man of authority in the county, derived from Old English scir = office, charge, authority + mann = man.

Shirer , Sherer , and others are variants of Shearer , the man who used scissors to trim finished cloth, or the sheep-shearer.

Shirley is an English place name from any of the so-named locations in Surrey, Derbyshire, and others, derived from Old English scir = bright + leah = wood, clearing.

Shoffner is derived from Schaffner , which is a variation of Schaffer , the German occupation name for the bailiff or steward, and derived from German schaffen = to manage, run. Variations are Schaffner, Scheffner, Schaffer, Schofer . The Czech cognate form is Safar . Diminutive forms include Schafferlin, Safarik . Scheffers is the Low German patronymic form.

Short is an English nickname derived from Middle English schort and Old English sceort = short...which described the man of non-NBA stature. When of Irish origin, it is derived from Gaelic Mac an Ghirr , which means "son of the short man" and was often translated to Short, when Anglicized. Shortman, Shortt are variations.

Shultz is likely an Americanized version of Schultz, the title given to a German village headman who collected dues or rents and paying them to the lord of the manor, from Middle High German schultheize > sulca = debt, due + heiz = to command.

Sicilia : (which also appears as Sciliani and Sciliano ) is an Italian/Spanish Place name for the man who was from Sicily, which was part of Aragon from 1282 to 1713.

Silkstone is an English place name from a so-named place in South Yorkshire, from the Old English name Sigelac (victory, play-sport) + tun = enclosure, settlement.

Silvester is an English and German patronymic name, from the Latin Silvester > silva = wood and a name borne by three popes, which added to its early popularity. Selvester, Sylvester, Siviter, Seveter and English variations; Vehster, Vester, Fehster , and Fester are German variants.

Simson : is an English Patronymic name derived from the Medieval given name Sim. It has a number of variations that include: Simson, Simms, Symms , and Symes .

Simpson : English Patronymic from the popular given name Simon (gracious hearing) from which evolved many surnames, including the two most popular versions: Simmons and Simpson .

Sigmund/Siegmund : and other variants are German patronymic names from sigi = victory + mund = protection. Siemund and Seemund are among the other versions.

Silver and Silber are cognates of the same name, the first an English nickname for the rich man, or the man with silvery-gray hair. Occasionally, it comes from the occupation of silversmith. Silber is the German version of the name, with variations Silbert and Silbermann , among others.

Sisson is one of the somewhat uncommon matronymic names, taken from the name of the mother -- Sisley, Cecilie -- from Latin Caecilia. It was the name of a Roman virgin martyr of the 2nd or 3rd century who was regarded as the patron saint of music. Sisley is the most common form of the name, and Sicely is a variation. Sisson is a diminutive form. Cognates include Cecille, Cecile, Cicile, Cicille (French) and Cacilie (German).

Skipper was derived chiefly in the Norfolk area of England as an Occupational name for the master of a ship, although occasionally it originated from the Middle English term skip(en) which meant to 'jump' or 'spring' and described an acrobat or professional tumbler. Skepper and Skipp are variations.

Sladden is also an English place name, but the original location has been lost to history, although its elements are derived from Old English sloh = slough + denu = valley.

Slaughter : English occupational name for the man who slaughtered the animals for the butcher, and also a place name for the person who lived by the muddy spot, or the sloe tree.

Slight/Slightam : Scottish Descriptive name from Middle English sleght = smooth or slim.

Sloan : Scottish/Northern Irish patronymic name from the Anglicized version of the Gaelic Sluaghadhan , a diminutive form of Sluaghadh . The family emigrated from Scotland to Northern Ireland during `Great Plantation' of Ulster during the reign of King James I. Sir Hans Sloan (1660-1753) a collector of papers, manuscripts and curios, donated his holdings to the government, and they became the basis for the British Museum.

Smalley is an English place name that described the man from Smalley in Derbyshire or Smalley in Lancashire -- both of which derived their names from the Old English words smoel = narrow + leah = wood, clearing. Smally is a variation of the name.

Smallwood is an English place name from the so-named location in Cheshire comprised of the Old English elements smœl = narrow + wudu = wood.

Smart is an English nickname for the brisk or active person, stemming from the Middle English word smart = quick, prompt -- which came from Old English smeart = stinging, painful. Smartman is a variation. Sir John Smart was a Garter Knight during the reign of King Edward IV (1461-1483).

Smedley is an English Place name from Old English smede = smooth + leah = clearing, for a literal translation of "smooth clearing" in the woods.

Smith : is an English Occupational name for man who works with metal, one of the earliest jobs for which specialist skills were required. It is a craft that was practiced in all countries, making the surname and its cognizants the most widely found of all occupational names in Europe. Medieval Smiths made horseshoes, plows, and items for the house. English variations are Smyth , and Smither ; German = Schmidt ; Flemish = De Smid ; Dutch = Smit ; Norwegian = Smidth ; Polish = Szmyt ; Czechoslovakian = Smid ; Jewish = Schmieder . Even the gypsies had the name: the Romany Petulengro translates to Smith.

Snyder : Dutch form of Taylor, an occupational name for the person who stitched coats and clothing.

Sobek is a Polish diminutive form of the Czech surname Sobota , derived from the given name Sobéslav , from the elements "take for oneself" + "glory". Sobiech Sobieski, Sobanski, Sobinski, Sobalski are Polish cognates. Diminutive forms include Sobotka (Czech); Sobek, Sobczyk, Sobieszek (Polish). Occasionally, Sobota is derived from the Polish and Czech word Sobota = Saturday, the name given to the man who was born, baptized, or converted on a Saturday.

Sokalofsky is one of the many variations derived from the Czech word sokol = falcon, which was the occupational name for the man who trained and hunted with falcons. Occasionally, it was used as a nickname in a transferred sense. When of known Jewish heritage, it is one of the many ornamental names taken when so ordered by the government -- animal names being among the many sorts that were adopted. Sokol is the Czech form; Sokoll, Sokole, Socol, Sokolski, Sokolsky are Jewish variations. Sokol, Sokolski, Sokalski, Sokal are Polish cognate forms. Sokolik is a diminutive Jewish form. Sokolov is a Russian patronymic form of Sokol, while Sokolowicz, is the Polish patronymic form. Sokolowsky and Sokalofsky are also found as place names of Polish origin.

Solis is an English surname taken from a medieval given name bestowed on a child born after the death of a sibling, from the Middle English term solace = comfort, consolation. Soliss and Solass are variations, Soulas is the French version.

Solis/Soltis : Polish occupational name for the magistrate or the mayor of the town.

Sommerfeld is a Jewish compound ornamental name comprised of the Germanic elements sommer = summer + feldt = field. Summer is an English nickname for the person with a warm personality, or the man who was associated with the season in some fashion. Occasionally, Summer is a variant of Sumner (the summoner) or Sumpter (the carrier). Other Jewish compounds are Somerfreund (summer friend), Somerschein (summer sunshine), Somerstein (summer stone). These ornamental names were chosen for their pleasing sound when surnames were bestowed on the Jews by government officials in central Europe. Variations of Summer are Somer, Sommer, Simmer ; cognates of the English Summer are Sommer (German), De Somer (Dutch/Flemish); Sommer (Danish/Norwegian).

Sorenson means "son of Sorin." It is a Jewish name that comes from the Yiddish female given name Sore (Sarah), which comes from Hebrew Sara = princess. Sorenson is actally a double-suffix, since the name Sorin itself is an indicator of descendancy from Sore (Sarah). Surin, Suris, Surizon are other variations.

Sorrell is a variation of the English place name Soar, which described the man who lived near the river Soar, which was name from Breton sar = to flow. Occasionally, Soar derived as a nickname for the man with reddish hair, from Anglo-Norman-French sor = chestnut (as in the color of dried leaves). Sor, Saur, Saura are cognates. Diminutive forms are Sorrel, Sorrell, Sorrill, Sorel, Soreau, Saurel, Soret, Sauret, Saurin, Saury .

Southworth is an English place name, from the location in Cheshire (formerly South Lancashire) so named, and comprised of the Old English elements suod = south + worod = enclosure, originally to identify the enclosed settlement lying in the south.

Speakman is an English nickname (or occupational name) given to the man who acted as a spokesman for the settlement in dealing with outsiders. It is derived from Middle English spekeman = advocate, spokesman. Spackman is a variation.

Spears : is among the many variations of the English Nickname for the tall, thin person, or for the man who used the spear with great skill. It derives from Old English spere = spear. It occasionally is derived from the maker of spears. Variations include: Spear, Speir, Spier (Scotland) and Speer (N. Ireland). When the -S- is present at the end of the name, it generally denotes a Patronymic version, as in the 'son of Spear.'

Spence/Spencer : English Occupational name for the person at the manor who dispensed the lord's provisions to those who lived on his land and worked at his estate. Requested by Walter Spence.

Spires is a patronymic variant of the surname Spire (that is, one would have identified the son of Spire by saying he was Spire's...). Spire is an English Nickname from the Middle English word spir = stalk or stem, and was used to describe the tall, thin man. By the way, church steeples, sometimes called spires, were not known as such until the 1500's, well after the surname was established.

Springer , Weller , and Wilder are examples of names that end in -er that are NOT occupational names. Most that do -- are. These three surnames are English Place names derived from colloquialisms at the time for a woods or forest, and the man designated as Springer lived nearby.

Stafford : is an English Place name that was adopted by the man who lived near a river or creek at a crossing point -- which was called a ford. The particular crossing point was a 'stony ford, or ford by a landing place.'

Stanbrook is an English place name -- it is derived from stan = stone + brook, and the man who lived near the stony stream was described by that name.

Stancil (also Stansell, Stansill ): When English, of joint Saxon-Viking origin with links to a farmstead and Roman villa of the same name in SouthYorkshire. The name refers to a stone chamber, or stane-sell, possibly within a church in the village of Stancil. In antiquity, the name is most often found in Yorkshire near the village of Doncaster, as well as in Berkshire and Kent. Submitted by David Stancil

Standen is the English place name derived from Old English stan = stone + denu = valley (which described the man who lived in the stony valley). Standing is a variation of Standen.

Standish : is an English Place name for the location in Lancashire (now Greater Manchester) from OE stan =stone + edisc =pasture, for a literal meaning of 'stone pasture.'

Stanier/Stonyer/Stanyer/Stonier : English Occupational Name...for stone cutter. Old English stan =stone. A stan sawyer or stan'yer was a cutter of stone.

Stanley is an English place name derived from the Old English elements stan = stone + leah = wood, clearing, and described the man who lived at the stony clearing in the woods, or a similar known geographic location.

Stanton is an English place name, from Old English stan = stone + tun = settlement, enclosure. The man from the "settlement on stony ground" was described as "stan-tun." There are numerous locations throughout England with the name, and the man who left one of those locations for a new settlement would also be referred to in that fashion by his new neighbors, to designate him as the new guy from that town.

Starnes is a regional variation of Stearnes , a patronymic variation of Stern , the English nickname for the severe person, from Middle English sterne = strict, austere. The son the the man they nicknamed Stern was Stern's boy, or Stern's son, or simply -- Sterns. The spelling variations are common -- surname spellings were not standardized until well after the American Civil War. Sterne, Stearne, Stearn are also common variations.

Staron is a Polish cognate of the Russian patronymic name Starikov, from the nickname Starik (Old Man) derived from stary = old. Other cognate forms include Starski, Starzycki, Staron (Polish); Stary (Czech); Starik, Starski (Jewish). Patronymic cognates include Starov (Bulgarian); Starikov, Staricoff (Jewish Ashkenazic). Diminutive forms are Starek, Starzyk, Starczyk (Polish); Starek (Czech) Starshenko (Ukrainian); Starcevic (Croatian). Starzynski, Starczewski are Polish place names with the same origin that served as origins for some surnames.

Starr : English Place name... Many surnames derived from the signs at the roadside inns during early times, when people didn't read signs as much as they looked at the pictures – and innkeepers sometimes took their sign's picture as a surname. Most were animals, birds or fish, but occasionally the innkeeper displayed other signs, such as the star, by which they became known.

Starrett, Sterritt, etc are among the variations of the English and Irish place name Start, derived from Old English steort = tail, and used in a transferred sense to describe the spur of a hill. The man who lived at that location would have been the first to be known by that name. Cognates are Stertz (German), Sterdt, Stert, Steert (Low German), Stertzel (Low German diminutive form). Starte, Stert, Sturt are other English versions, and Sterritt is the form chiefly found in Northern Ireland (the land originally settled by the Scotsmen who came to be known as Scotch-Irish).

Steele : English Place name, from 'stile' or a place of steep ascent.

The suffix is actually - ski , or - sky -- which was originally associated with names in the same fashion the English suffix - ish was associated with nouns, ie. bookish, pertaining or related to books. The - ski suffix is found among the Polish and Ashkenazic Jewish, and later came to be associated with status in the same fashion that de - and von - were used among the French and Germans, respectively, to indicate gentry status.
Sterba ( štérba is close...the -e should actually have the same mark above it as the -s) is a Czech nickname for someone with a tooth missing, from the Czech word štérba = gap. Many of the Czech surnames had suffixes or other alterations that weren't literal variations.

Sterling is a variation of the Scottish place name Stirling, from the city in central Scotland which was recorded as early as the 12th century, and may have been derived from the name of a river, although it's origin is unclear. The name described the man who emigrated from that city during Medieval times.

Stevenson is a variation of the English Patronymic name Stephen/Steven, which originated in the Greek given name Stephanos , meaning 'crown.' Stephen was the first Christian martyr, stoned to death three years after the death of Christ, and his name was widely adopted throughout the Christian countries in the Middle Ages. Among the numerous variations are Stephenson, Stevenson, Steven, Stiven, Steffen, Steffan . French cognates are Stephan, Stephane , Estienne, Etienne . Other cognates include Estievan, Etievant, Tievant, Thevand (Provencal), Stefano, Stifano, Stephano, Stievano, Steffani (Italian), Esteban (Spanish), Esteva, Esteve (Portuguese), Stefan (Rumanian), Stoffen (Bavaria), Stevaen (Flemish), Schippang, Zschepang, Schoppan (German of Slav origin), and many, many others.

Stiehr, Stier, Steer: German occupational names for the man who watched the livestock.

The Old English word stille = quiet + burna = brook, stream -- stille burna would easily evolve into Stilborn and its variants, to describe the man who lived by the quiet stream.

Stilling is likely a diminutive form of the English and German nickname Still, given to the placid person, from Middle English and Middle High German still = calm, quiet. The "little placid one" would be a stilling.

Strickland is an English place name, from the so-named location in Cumberland and derived from Old English styric = bullock + land = pasture. Stirland is a variation. In the year 1230, Sir Walter de Stirkeland was the holder of Stirkland Manor in Cumberland.

Stoddard is a variation of the English occupational name Stoddart, who was the keeper and breeder of horses. The name derived from Old English stod = place where horses were kept for breeding + hierde = herdsman, keeper. Variations are Stodhart, Stoddard, Studart, Studdeard, Studdert, Stiddard, Stothard, Stothart, Stothert, Stuttard .

Stokes is a patronymic form of the name Stoke , an English place name derived from the numerous places thoughout England by that name. They were named from Old English stoc = "place, house, dwelling" and generally referred to an outlying settlement away from a larger one. Variations are Stokes, Stoak, Stook, Stookes, Stoker .

Stonham is a variation of the English place name Stoneham , the names of two villages in Hampshire which got their names from Old English stan = stone + ham = homestead. Stonham is also a place is Sussex that would serve as an place of origin for many with this name.

Stout is an English nickname for the brave or steadfast man, from the Middle English term stout = steadfast. Occasionally, it is derived from Old Norse Stutr = gnat, which is just the opposite of the English term. Stoute, Stoutt, Stutt are variations.

Strobel : German nickname that is derived from Straub, which comes from Middle High German strup = rough, and was given to the "shock-headed man" for his hair style.

Stroman is a variation of the German cognate of Straw, the English occupational name for the man who dealt in straw, from Old English streaw = straw, or occasionally, a nickname for the man with the straw-colored hair. Other German forms of the name are Stroh, Strohmann, Stroman, Strohman . Jewish versions are Shtroy, Shtroi (from the Yiddish pronunciation of straw).

Stroud is an English place name from the so-named locations in Gloucester and Middlesex derived from Old English strod = ground overgrown with brushwood. The man who emigrated from one location to another was often referred to by his place of origin, and thereby adopted the surname. Strood and Strode are variations.

Stroupe : comes from the Middle High German word strup , which means 'rough, unkempt' and is a German Descriptive name for the 'shock-headed' man.

The German name Stucker is a place name for the man who lived near the prominent tree stump, while the German name Stuck is a place name from the so-named town whose name origin means "plot of land."

Stukeley: Stukley, Stucley , and Stukeley are variations of a habitation name from a place in the county of Huntingdonshire (now Cambridgeshire) which got its name from Old English styfic = stump + leah = wood. A family by the name of Stucley can be traced to Richard Stucley (died 1441) who is also recorded as Richard Styuecle.

Sullivan/Sullivant : Anglicized form of the Gaelic O'Suileabhain , descendant of Suileabhan , a given name composed of the elements suil = eye + dubh = black, dark + the diminutive suffix -an.

Susko is a variation of Zisin, a Jewish metronymic name derived from Zise, a Yiddish female name that meant "sweet" + the suffix -in. Zissin, Susin, Zisovich, Ziszovics are variations. Diminutive forms include Ziske, Ziskis, Ziskin, Zyskin, Siskin, Suskin, Susskin, Ziskovitch, Ziskovich, Ziskovitz, Zuscovitch, Susskovich, Suskovich, Susko, Zislis, Zislin, Sislin, Zisslowicz.

Sutherland is a Scottish regional name that described the man who came from the former county by this name, which got its name from Old Norse suðroen = southern + land = land. It was called the South land because it was south of Scandinavia and south of the Norse colonies of Orkney and Shetland Islands. The man who came from that area of Scotland was referred to by his former place of residence.

Sweeny is an Irish patronymic name, from an Anglicized form of Mac Suibhne , which meant ‘son of Suibhne’ whose name was a nickname meaning ‘pleasant.’ Variations include McSeveny, McSween, McSweeney, McSwiney, McSwine, McQueenie, McQueen, McQueyn McQuine, Magueen, McWhin , and McWhan.

Swann/Swan : English Nickname for a person noted for purity of excellence (attributes of the swan, supposedly), from Old English swan . Some Swan surnames derived from the signs at the roadside inns during early times, when people didn't read signs as much as they looked at the pictures – and innkeepers sometimes took their sign's picture as a surname. (Most were animals, birds or fish.) Occasionally, Swan is derived as an Occupational name for the servant or retainer as a variant of Swain . Cognates include Schwan (German), De Swaen (Flemish), De Swaan , Van den Swaan, Van den Zwaan (Dutch), Svane (Norwegian), and Svahn, Swahn (Swedish).

Sweet : Swett is a variation of Sweet, an English Nickname for a popular person, derived from Old English swete . Given names Swet(a) -- masculine, and Swete -- feminine, were derived from this word, and survived into the early Middle Ages, and may be the source of the surname. Swett isn't the only variant: Swetman, Sweetman, Sweatman, and Swatman are among the English varieties. There are cognative versions many countries including Sussman (German), DeZoete (Flemish), and Susser (Jewish).

Syri : English Patronymic Name... from given name Syred and elements sige = victory + roed = counsel

Szczepanski is a Polish cognate of the patronymic surname Stephen, which has its origins in the Greek Stephanos = crown, and was a popular name throughout the Christian countries in Medieval times. Stefanski is another Polish form. Polish patronymics (that is, "son of Stephen or Stefanski") are Stefanek, Stefanczyk, Szczepanik, Szczepanek .

Szymczyk/Szymczak : Polish Patronymic Name...from the popular name Simon, which means 'gracious hearing' and was common during the Middle Ages. It was due to affection for Simon Bar-Jonah surnamed Peter, rather than to Simeon -- the second son of Jacob by Leah. (from Elsdon Smith)

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last updated on: September 13 2018

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