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First Names That Were Surnames First
Can you name the top 50 first names (given to babies in the US in 2011) that were originally only surnames?
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First names are ranked according to birth totals in the 2011 SSA data. With multiple spellings, only the most popular is counted for ranking. Names are classed by gender using SSA top 1000 names only.
Skilled worker in stone
Son of Maud, Mahalt or Matilda
Person from a place of this name, meaning 'small, round hill', OR anglicization of Gaelic 'O'Leoghain', meaning 'the descendant of the Warrior'
Son of Jacques (John)
Anglicization of Old Gaelic 'O'Maoilriain', meaning 'heroes/worshippers of Rian' (water)
Person from a place called Langdon
Son of Adam
Person from a 'brade denu', or broad valley
Maker or layer of tiles
Transporter of goods
One who makes clothes
Person from a place of this name, meaning 'broom/gorse hill' OR son of Brand OR son of a swordsmith
Derived from Gaelic 'cam' and 'sron', meaning 'person with a crooked nose', OR person from a place of this name
Anglicization of Gaelic 'Siol Cuin' or 'Con', meaning 'seed or race of Con'
From Middle English name Aubri, meaning 'elf-ruler', 'elf-counsel' or 'elf-kingdom'
One who tracks and kills game or other animals
Contraction of 'Augustine'
Nickname of a greatly skilled huntsman
Black haired/dark complexioned OR fair haired/fair complexioned
Person from the village of Colaton Raleigh
Person from a place of this name, meaning 'a clearing overgrown with bent-grass'
Son of Alice, Ellis, Alan or Alister
Person from a place of this name, meaning 'ash tree wood or clearing'
Official in charge of a hunting park
Person from a place of this name, meaning 'Pacca's land'
Maker of barrels or tubs
Derived from Gaelic 'Mac Bradaigh', meaning 'descendent of a dishonest chief' OR person with good eyesight OR person from Broad island
Person from a place of this name, meaning 'rye farm' OR contraction of Gaelic 'O' Raghailligh', meaning 'decendent of Raghallach'
Uncertain Scottish origin. A variation is 'Corsan'
One who plays a particular type of stringed instrument
Person from a place called Haydon or Heydon
Derived from Gaelic surname 'O'Nullain', meaning 'descendant of the crier'
Contraction of 'de Sancto Dioniso' (St Denis)
Son of a 'greyve', a person in charge of estates or property
Son of Brice OR an anglicization of Gaelic 'O'Briosain'
Spanish/Portuguese variation of early Greek 'didahke', meaning 'doctrine'
Son of Coinneach
Person from a place of this name, meaning 'settlement to the east'
Knight's attendant; an apprentice squire. Later a young male servant to a nobleman
Mounted warrior or messenger OR a resident of a 'ryd' or wood clearing
Dyer or seller of bright red cloth
Person from a place of this name, meaning 'ash tree settlement'
Player of pipes or bagpipes
Son of Hudde
Son of Milo or Mile
Steward or official, today developed into the word 'bailiff'
Person from a place of this name, original Gaelic name being 'caol'
Anglicization of Old Gaelic 'Cinneidigh', meaning 'grim or helmeted head'
Person from the now capital city of the UK
Derived from Old Norse 'Asketill', meaning 'god' and 'sacrificial cauldron'
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