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100 Classical Latin Last Names: With Ancient Meanings

Updated
Discover how these unforgettable Latin last names have stuck around for thousands of years.

We’re all a little obsessed with the Roman empire, from politics and philosophy to culture and mythology. Many Latin last names we still see today originated with the ancient Romans over a millennia ago. Where do you start digging without getting lost in a sea of obscure names without meaning?

Our original list includes 100 Latin surnames, ranging from the super old and powerful to the everyday. You’ll see how they survived and even evolved over time to outlast other names that came long after they appeared.


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100 Beautiful Latin Surnames

Unearth fascinating Latin last names and bring your inner Roman citizen to light.

Achillinus

Achillinus is the original Latin spelling for the Italian Achillini. Both refer back to the Trojan hero Achilles, known for his bravery. Achillinus has no popularity stats since it no longer appears in this form.

  • Origin: Latin, Greek
  • Meaning: Trojan war hero
  • Pronunciation: Ahk-ih-LEEN-Uhs
  • Variations: Achillini
  • Namesakes: Joannes Achillinus, an Italian philosopher known for Annotazioni della Lingua Volgare (1536). Claudius Achillinus, an Italian philosopher known for a collection of letters on the plague of 1630.
Rare, Unusual

Bonaventura

Bonaventura means “good fortune” in Latin, a word used to wish a good omen on someone. It’s also one of several Latin last names named after a saint (St. Bonaventure).

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: Good luck
  • Pronunciation: BOW-naa-Veyn-TUW-raa
  • Variations: Bonaventure
  • Namesakes: Giacomo Bonaventura, an Italian footballer for the Italy national football team. Andrea Bonaventura, a Canadian football player for the Calgary Dinos.
  • Popularity: Bonaventura is rare worldwide and mainly used in Italy.
Traditional, Uncommon

Bonfils

Bonfils is the opposite of the French Maufils, an Old French nickname meaning “bad son.” Here, it’s made up of “bon,” meaning “good,” and “fils,” meaning “son.”

  • Origin: Latin, French
  • Meaning: Good son
  • Pronunciation: BOHN-fihls
  • Namesakes: Frederick Bonfils, an American publisher who founded the Denver Post. Marie-Lydie Bonfils, the first professional woman photographer in the Middle East.
  • Popularity: Bonfils is very rare worldwide and primarily used in France, where it’s slightly uncommon.
Nicknames, Unique

Bonhomme

Bonhomme has many meanings in French, from “good man” and “fellow” to “old man” or “peasant.” It’s made up of the French “bon,” meaning “good,” and “homme,” meaning “man.”

  • Origin: Latin, French
  • Meaning: Good man
  • Pronunciation: BOHN-ahm
  • Variations: Bonhomme, Bonhome
  • Namesakes: Tessa Bonhomme, a Canadian TV sports reporter for The Sports Network. Paul Bonhomme, an English pilot for the Red Bull Air Race World Championship Team from 2003 to 2015.
  • Popularity: Bonhomme is rare worldwide and mostly used in France, where it ranked 421st in 2014.
Unique, Nicknames

Borbély

Borbély is a Hungarian occupational term for “barber.” It works like the German and French Barbier, from the Latin “barbe,” meaning “beard.”

  • Origin: Latin, Hungarian
  • Meaning: Barber
  • Pronunciation: BOHR-beh-Liy
  • Variations: Borbely
  • Namesakes: Zsanett Borbély, a Hungarian handballer who competed at the European Championship in 2006. László Borbély, a member of the Romanian Chamber of Deputies since 2000.
  • Popularity: Borbély is rare worldwide and mostly used in Hungary, ranking 100th in 2014.
Occupational, Traditional

Bösch

Bösch is an example of Latin surnames used in many classical European cultures. It indicates a Catalan from a location called Bosch and a German who lives near a sloped hillside.

  • Origin: Latin, German
  • Meaning: Wood
  • Pronunciation: BOHSH
  • Variations: Bosch
  • Namesakes: Fabian Bösch, a Swiss freestyle skier and gold medalist at the 2016 Winter X Games. Herbert Bösch, an Austrian member of the European Parliament from 1995 to 2009.
  • Popularity: Bösch is rare worldwide, mainly used in Spain, and ranked 66th in the Netherlands in 2014.
Geographical, Common

Bosco

Bosco is a lesser-known Italian surname for someone living or working in a wood. It’s taken from the Latin “boscus,” meaning “shrub” or “undergrowth,” and means “dweller in a wood.”

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: Near a wood
  • Pronunciation: BAAS-Koh
  • Namesakes: Philip Bosco, an American actor known for The Savages (2007). Henri Bosco, a French writer nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature four times.
  • Popularity: Bosco is rare worldwide and mostly used in Burundi, ranking 66th in 2014.
Geographical, Common

Boulos

Boulos usually appears in Egypt and Lebanon based on the Arabic variation of Būlus. It’s a form of the personal name Paul that originated in the Roman empire.

  • Origin: Latin, Arabic
  • Meaning: Paul
  • Pronunciation: BUW-lohs
  • Variations: Boolos, Bulos, Bulus
  • Namesakes: Mikaella Boulos, a Greco-Cypriot-Lebanese actress known for Madame Bambino (2008). Michel Boulos, a Canadian fencer and gold medalist at the 1999 Pan American Games.
  • Popularity: Boulos is rare worldwide and primarily used in Egypt, where it’s slightly uncommon.
Ancient, Unusual

Britton

Britton denoted a person “from Britain” just after the end of the Dark Ages. It’s also associated with those “from Brittany” (called “Bretons”) and first appeared in Devon in the 11th-century.

  • Origin: Latin, English
  • Meaning: From Britain/Brittany
  • Pronunciation: BRIH-Tuhn
  • Variations: Brittain
  • Namesakes: Pamela Britton, an American actress known for the series My Favorite Martian (1963 to 1966). Fern Britton, an English TV presenter of Ready Steady Cook.
  • Popularity: Britton is rare worldwide, mainly used in the U.S., and ranked 399th in Wales in 2014.
Ancient, Nicknames

Brunetti

Brunetti’s root is “brun,” meaning “brown,” and relates to hair or skin color. It may be linked to the Germanic first name Bruno, used as a nickname to describe someone’s appearance.

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: Little brunette
  • Pronunciation: Bruw-NEHT-ee
  • Variations: Brunetto, Brunotti
  • Namesakes: Federica Brunetti, an Italian basketball player with CUS Cagliari Pallacanestro. Erik Brunetti, an American designer and founder of the clothing brand FUCT.
  • Popularity: Brunetti is rare worldwide and primarily used in Italy, where it ranked 258th in 2014.
Unique, Nicknames
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Campana

Campana is an occupational name for a “bell-ringer” or “bell-maker.” It means “bell,” since church bells were first made in the Campania region of Italy.

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: Bell-ringer
  • Pronunciation: Kaam-PAA-nah
  • Variations: Campaña, Campańa
  • Namesakes: Alessandro Campana, an English footballer for Tring Athletic. Héctor Campana, an Argentine vice-governor of the Córdoba Province from 2007 to 2011.
  • Popularity: Campana is rare worldwide and mostly used in Italy, ranking 444th in 2014.
Occupational, Geographical

Candelario

Candelario refers to someone from the Salamanca province of Spain since “candela” means the “flower of the chestnut tree.” The province is known for its many chestnut trees and those living nearby.

  • Origin: Latin, Spanish
  • Meaning: Chestnut tree flower
  • Pronunciation: Kaan-deh-LAAR-iy-Ow
  • Variations: Candelaria
  • Namesakes: Felicia Candelario, a Dominican Republic sprinter who competed at the 1984 Summer Olympics. Claro Candelario, the Filipino founder of the Committee for the Protection of Filipino Rights in 1939.
  • Popularity: Candelario is rare worldwide, mainly used in Mexico, and ranked 444th in the Dominican Republic in 2014.
Unusual, Rare

Casale

Casale derives from the Latin “casalis,” meaning “villa” or “set of houses.” It relates to “casa,” meaning “house,” and applies to many people living in Piedmont, Italy.

  • Origin: Latin, Spanish
  • Meaning: Villa
  • Pronunciation: Kaa-SAA-leh
  • Variations: Casale
  • Namesakes: Marcela Casale, an Italian field hockey player for the Italian national team. Nathalie Alonso Casale, a French director who won the 1992 Golden Calf for Best Short Film.
  • Popularity: Casale is rare worldwide and primarily used in Italy, where it ranked 580th in 2014.
Geographical, Unique

Cheshire

Cheshire is one of many English names beginning as Latin surnames and is based on the first name Chester. It was used for someone “from Cheshire,” in England, initially shortened from Legeceasterscir.

  • Origin: Latin, English
  • Meaning: Of Cheshire
  • Pronunciation: CHEH-sher
  • Variations: Chessire, Cheshyre, Chesshere
  • Namesakes: Simon Cheshire, an English children’s writer known for Jeremy Brown of the Secret Service (1997). John Cheshire, an English boxer who competed at the 1968 Summer Olympics.
  • Popularity: Cheshire is rare worldwide, primarily used in England, and ranked 1,269th in Wales in 2014.
Geographical, Traditional

Cipriani

Cipriani originated with the Greek “kyprios,” referring to the island of Cyprus. As the original Roman name Cyprinus, it was given to someone “from Cyprus.”

  • Origin: Latin, Greek
  • Meaning: From Cyprus
  • Pronunciation: Sip-ree-AA-Niy
  • Variations: Cipriano
  • Namesakes: Giuseppe Cipriani, the Italian founder of Harry’s Bar in Venice, where the bellini cocktail was invented. Carmela Cipriani, an Italian racing cyclist for Aromitalia–Basso Bikes–Vaiano.
  • Popularity: Cipriani is rare worldwide and mainly used in Italy, ranking 301st in 2014.
Geographical, Ancient

Clemensen

Clemensen refers to “the son of Clementius,” from the Latin “clemens,” meaning “mild” or “merciful.” Unsurprisingly, Clement was the name for 14 popes.

  • Origin: Latin, Danish
  • Meaning: Merciful
  • Pronunciation: CLEH-mehn-Sehn
  • Variations: Clemenson
  • Namesakes: Isabella Clemmensen, a Danish curler and a two-time Danish women’s champion. Scott Clemmensen, an American ice hockey player for the New Jersey Devils.
  • Popularity: Clemensen is very rare worldwide, primarily used in Denmark, and ranked 710th in Greenland in 2014.
Unique, Patronymic

Constantinescu

Many Latin family names have ended up in Romania, where the beautiful Constantinescu means a “descendant of Constantin.” Constantin(us) means both “constant” and “determined” and was the name of 11 Roman emperors.

  • Origin: Latin, Romanian
  • Meaning: Son of Constantin
  • Pronunciation: KAHN-Staan-tee-NEHS-kuw
  • Variations: Constantinesco
  • Namesakes: Emil Constantinescu, the president of Romania from 1996 to 2000. Marian Constantinescu, a Romanian footballer for Politehnica Timișoara.
  • Popularity: Constantinescu is rare worldwide and mostly used in Romania, where it ranked 101st in 2014.
Patronymic, Traditional

Cuoco

Cuoco is an occupational surname for an Italian “cook” or “seller of cooked meats.” It might have also been used for someone who ran a tavern based on the Latin “coquus,” meaning “cook.”

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: Chef
  • Pronunciation: KWOH-kouw
  • Namesakes: Candice Cuoco, an American fashion designer and finalist on Season 14 of Project Runway. Kaley Cuoco, an American actress known for the series The Big Bang Theory.
  • Popularity: Cuoco is very rare worldwide, mainly used in Italy, and ranked 515th in Bermuda in 2014.
Occupational, Uncommon

D’Agostino

D’agostino is an example of multiple Italian surnames taken from the father’s name (Agostino). It’s associated with the Latin “augustus,” meaning “favored with good omens.”

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: Descendant of Agostino
  • Pronunciation: Deh-Ahg-ehs-TEEN-oh
  • Variations: Agostino
  • Namesakes: Peppino D’Agostino, an Italian-American guitarist known for the album Silk and Steel in 1985. Nicholas D’Agostino Sr., an Italian-American businessman and the co-founder of D’Agostino Supermarkets.
  • Popularity: D’Agostino is rare worldwide and primarily used in Italy, ranking 110th in 2014.
Patronymic, Traditional

Delacroix

Delacroix comes from the Latin “crux,” meaning “cross,” and means “of the cross” in French. It was given to those living near a church or a religious person.

  • Origin: Latin, French
  • Meaning: Of the cross
  • Pronunciation: Deh-leh-KWAA
  • Variations: Delecroix
  • Namesakes: Charles-François Delacroix, the French Minister of Finance during the reign of Louis XVI of France. Michel Delacroix, a member of the Belgian Senate from 2007 to 2011.
  • Popularity: Delacroix is rare worldwide and mostly used in France, where it ranked 1,061st in 2014.
Ancient, Uncommon
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Desrosiers

Desrosiers means “of the roses” for someone living near many rose bushes. It’s based on the French “rosier,” meaning “rose bush,” and is related to Les Rosiers town.

  • Origin: Latin, French
  • Meaning: Of the roses
  • Pronunciation: Deh-ROH-zee-Ay
  • Variations: Desrossiers, Desroisiers
  • Namesakes: Sylvie Desrosiers, a Canadian writer for the 2006 film Duo. Marie-Michèle Desrosiers, a Canadian pop singer and former member of Beau Dommage.
  • Popularity: Desrosiers is rare worldwide and mainly used in Canada, ranking 312th in 2014.
Geographical, Unique

Drusus

Drusus is so old that it dates back to the Roman Claudia family. It came into being because of a Roman warrior who killed a chieftain named Drausus. Druses’ Celtic definition is “strong” and was used by the imperial family of ancient Rome.

  • Origin: Latin, Celtic
  • Meaning: Strong
  • Pronunciation: DRUW-sehs
  • Variations: Druse
  • Namesakes: Nero Claudius Drusus, a 1st-century BCE Roman politician and great-grandfather of the Emperor Nero. Gaius Livius Drusus, a blind Roman jurist mentioned in Cicero’s Tusculanae Disputationes (45 BCE).
  • Popularity: Drusus is extremely rare worldwide, with just three known occurrences in 2014, primarily in the U.S.
Noble, Nicknames

Duchamp

In French, the prefix “du” means “from the,” while “champ” indicates a “field.” It also refers to several places in France called Le Champ.

  • Origin: Latin, French
  • Meaning: By the field
  • Pronunciation: Duw-CHAAHMP
  • Variations: Deschamp
  • Namesakes: Marcel Duchamp, a French artist and primarily member of the Dada art movement. L. Timmel Duchamp, an American science fiction writer and editor for Aqueduct Press.
  • Popularity: Duchamp is very rare worldwide and primarily used in France, where it’s slightly uncommon.
Geographical, Rare

Dupuis

Dupuis means “of the well or pit” based on the Old French “puis.” It was used when a home stood beside a well and described someone from Le Puy, France.

  • Origin: Latin, French
  • Meaning: Of the well
  • Pronunciation: Duw-PWEE
  • Variations: Dupuits
  • Namesakes: Roy Dupuis, a Canadian actor known for the series La Femme Nikita. Jacques P. Dupuis, the Deputy Premier of Quebec from 2005 to 2007.
  • Popularity: Dupuis is rare worldwide and mainly used in France, where it ranked 91st in 2014.
Unusual, Geographical

Eccleston

Eccleston is taken from the Latin “ecclesia,” meaning “church.” It became linked to the Old English “eclēs,” meaning “church,” and “tūn,” meaning “farm” or “village.”

  • Origin: Latin, English
  • Meaning: Church village
  • Pronunciation: EHK-ehls-Tuhn
  • Variations: Ecclestone
  • Namesakes: Christopher Eccleston, an English actor known for the sci-fi series Doctor Who (2005). John Eccleston, an English puppeteer known for the 1999 series Farscape.
  • Popularity: Eccleston is rare worldwide, primarily used in England, and ranked 650th in Jamaica in 2014.
Geographical, Traditional

Fabbro

Fabbro is an Italian occupational surname for an “ironworker” or “blacksmith.” It comes from the Latin “faber,” meaning “craftsman,” and has been around since pre-Christian Italy.

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: Blacksmith
  • Pronunciation: FAA-brouw
  • Variations: Fabro
  • Namesakes: Joe Fabbro, the mayor of Sudbury, Ontario from 1968 to 1975. Dante Fabbro, a Canadian ice hockey player for the Nashville Predators.
  • Popularity: Fabbro is rare worldwide and mostly used in Italy, ranking 1,742nd in 2014.
Occupational, Ancient

Farina

Farina refers to “wheat flour,” but was used for a “miller,” who ground grain for a living. Farina has also been used as a nickname for someone with a pale complexion.

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: Wheat flour
  • Pronunciation: Faa-REEN-ah
  • Variations: Fariña
  • Namesakes: Salvatore Farina, an Italian writer nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature three times. Dennis Farina, an American actor known for Manhunter (1986).
  • Popularity: Farina is rare worldwide and mainly used in Italy, where it ranked 67th in 2014.
Occupational, Nicknames

Feigenbaum

Feigenbaum is an Anglicized surname from the Latin “ficus,” meaning “fig tree.” It denotes a house or building with the sign of a fig tree or a type of pear called a Feigenbaum.

  • Origin: Latin, German
  • Meaning: Fig tree
  • Pronunciation: FAEY-gehn-Bauwm
  • Variations: Feigenhauer
  • Namesakes: Edward Feigenbaum, an American computer scientist and joint winner of the 1994 ACM Turing Award. Yehoshua Feigenbaum, an Israeli footballer with the Israel national football team.
  • Popularity: Feigenbaum is very rare worldwide and primarily used in the U.S.
Rare, Geographical

Fiore

Fiore is meant for a “dweller at, or near, a place where flowers grow” in Italian. It was also a medieval first name based on the Latin Flos, meaning “flower.”

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: Flower
  • Pronunciation: Fee-AWR-eh
  • Variations: Di Fiore, Fiori
  • Namesakes: Alejandro Fiore, an Argentine actor known for the series Los Simuladores (2002 to 2004). Toni Fiore, an American TV host of the PBS series Totally Vegetarian.
  • Popularity: Fiore is rare worldwide and mostly used in Italy, ranking 75th in 2014.
Unique, Traditional

Fitzroy

As an Anglo-Norman name, Fitzroy is composed of “fitz,” meaning “son of,” and “roy,” meaning “king.” The original name bearer was Henry Fitzroy, the illegitimate child of Henry VIII.

  • Origin: Latin, French
  • Meaning: Son of the king
  • Pronunciation: Fihtz-ROEY
  • Variations: FitzRoy, Fitzroi
  • Namesakes: Maurice Fitzroy, an English cricketer for Northamptonshire. Emily Fitzroy, an English actress appearing in The White Cliffs of Dover (1944).
  • Popularity: Fitzroy is very rare worldwide and mainly used in Australia.
Noble, Patronymic
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Fontius

Very little is known about Fontius, but it seems connected to Spanish surnames like Fontes. Both derive from the Latin “fonte,” meaning “fount” or “source of spring.”

  • Origin: Latin
  • Meaning: Fount (fountain)
  • Pronunciation: FAHN-tiy-Uhs
  • Variations: Fontes
  • Popularity: Fontius is extremely rare worldwide, with 137 known occurrences in 2014, primarily in Germany.
Rare, Ancient

Fosse

Fosse’s English meaning refers to a “dweller at a trench.” It’s linked to the Latin “fossa,” meaning “ditch,” and the French location La Fosse.

  • Origin: Latin, French
  • Meaning: Ditch
  • Pronunciation: FAWHS
  • Variations: Foisse, Fosses
  • Namesakes: Bob Fosse, an American choreographer known for All That Jazz (1979). Jon Fosse, a Norwegian author known for Red, Black (1983).
  • Popularity: Fosse is rare worldwide, mostly used in France, and ranked 193rd in Norway in 2014.
Geographical, Unique

Franić

In southern Slavic countries, Franić means “son of Franjo.” It’s one of many patronymic Latin last names based on the first name Francis. Franić is inspired by St. Francis of Assisi and is also associated with the medieval Knight Templars.

  • Origin: Latin, Serbo-Croatian
  • Meaning: Son of Franjo
  • Pronunciation: FRAAN-ihch
  • Variations: Franich
  • Namesakes: Domagoj Franić, a Croatian footballer for NK Solin. Frane Franić, the Croatian archbishop of Split-Makarska from 1969 to 1988.
  • Popularity: Franić is very rare worldwide and mainly used in Australia.
Patronymic, Uncommon

Fransson

Fransson is a mostly Swedish surname taken from the Latin Franciscus. It’s related to Francis and means “Frenchman,” “free man,” and “son of Frans.”

  • Origin: Latin, Swedish
  • Meaning: Frenchman
  • Pronunciation: FRAEN-Sohn
  • Variations: Franssen
  • Namesakes: Jenny Fransson, a Swedish freestyle wrestler and bronze medalist at the 2016 Summer Olympics. Jonas Fransson, a Swedish ice hockey player for Rögle BK.
  • Popularity: Fransson is rare worldwide and primarily used in Sweden, where it ranked 49th in 2014.
Ancient, Traditional

Garnier

Garnier is based on the French “grenier” and Latin “granarium,” meaning “granary.” It’s an occupational name for someone who works at a gran­ary and is interchangeable with the English Garner.

  • Origin: Latin, French
  • Meaning: Granary worker
  • Pronunciation: GAAR-nee-Ehy
  • Variations: Garner
  • Namesakes: Tony Garnier, an American bassist who played with Bob Dylan. Mark Garnier, an English member of Parliament since 2010.
  • Popularity: Garnier is rare worldwide and mostly used in France, ranking 27th in 2014.
Occupational, Common

Genovese

In Italian, Genovese refers to “someone who came from the province of Genova,” meaning “head of the water.” It also referred to other northern Italians and is best known for the 20th-century Genovese crime family in the U.S.

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: From Genoa
  • Pronunciation: JHEH-noh-Vees
  • Variations: Genovesi
  • Namesakes: Paolo Genovese, an Italian director known for Perfect Strangers (2016). María Noel Genovese, a Uruguayan model who competed in the 1962 Miss World competition.
  • Popularity: Genovese is rare worldwide, mainly used in Italy, and ranked 146th in Malta in 2014.
Geographical, Ancient

Greco

Greco literally means “Greek” in Italian based on the Latin Graecus. Other than referring to Greeks in Italy, Greco was sometimes an old nickname for a crafty person.

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: Greek
  • Pronunciation: GREH-koh
  • Variations: Grecco, Del Greco
  • Namesakes: Gerardo Greco, an Italian correspondent for RAI. Sebastiano Greco, an Italian volleyball player who competed at the 1980 Summer Olympics.
  • Popularity: Greco is rare worldwide and primarily used in Italy, where it ranked 12th in 2014.
Ancient, Common

Hardwick

Like many British last names, Hardwick focuses on a geographical location. It refers to someone “from Hardwick,” a town in Yorkshire, and several other locations in England.

  • Origin: Latin, English
  • Meaning: From Hardwick
  • Pronunciation: HAHRD-wihk
  • Variations: Hardwicke
  • Namesakes: Chris Hardwick, an American actor and host of AMC’s Talking Dead. Damien Hardwick, an Australian rules football coach for the Gold Coast Suns.
  • Popularity: Hardwick is rare worldwide, mostly used in the U.S., and ranked 720th in Wales in 2014.
Geographical, Traditional

Havelka

Havelka is a Czech surname based on the personal name Havel. Havel itself means everything from “rooster” and “barbarian” to “foreigner” and “from Gaul.”

  • Origin: Latin, Czech
  • Meaning: Son of Havel
  • Pronunciation: Haa-VEHL-kaa
  • Variations: Havelková
  • Namesakes: František Havelka, a Czech boxer who competed at the 1936 Summer Olympics. Svatopluk Havelka, a Czech composer who founded the NOTA Ensemble (1949 to 1950).
  • Popularity: Havelka is rare worldwide and mainly used in the Czech Republic, ranking 224th in 2014.
Patronymic, Traditional

Hristov

Hristov is a Bulgarian surname based on Hristo, a Bulgarian and Macedonian pet name for Christopher or Christian. It originally appeared as the Greek Christophoros, meaning “Christ-bearer.”

  • Origin: Latin, Bulgarian
  • Meaning: Son of Hristo
  • Pronunciation: HRIHS-Tohf
  • Variations: Kristov
  • Namesakes: Marian Hristov, a Bulgarian footballer for PFC Balkan Botevgrad. Valentin Hristov, a Bulgarian weightlifter and silver medalist at the 1980 Olympics.
  • Popularity: Hristov is rare worldwide and primarily used in Bulgaria, where it ranked 15th in 2014.
Unique, Patronymic
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Joossens

Joossens means “son of Joos,” a Belgian variation of Jost and Joseph. It means “Jehovah increases” or “righteous,” which makes for a strong interpretation of Joossens.

  • Origin: Latin, Belgian
  • Meaning: Son of Joos
  • Pronunciation: JOO-sehns
  • Variations: Joossen, Joosen
  • Popularity: Joossens is very rare worldwide and mostly used in Belgium.
Patronymic, Uncommon

Kappel

Kappel denotes “one who came from Kapelle in Germany” but also refers to a “dweller near a chapel.” It comes from the High German “kap(p)elle,” meaning “chapel.”

  • Origin: Latin, German
  • Meaning: Chapel
  • Pronunciation: KAE-Puhl
  • Variations: Keppel, Kaeppel
  • Namesakes: Barbara Kappel, an Austrian member of the FPÖ from 2010 to 2014. Niko Kappel, a German paralympic athlete and gold medalist at the 2016 Summer Paralympics.
  • Popularity: Kappel is rare worldwide, mainly used in Germany, and ranked 646th in Denmark in 2014.
Geographical, Unique

Kárpáthy

Karpathy is one of the rarest Latin surnames, almost exclusively Hungarian. It translates to the Carpathian Mountains, also called the Sarmatian Mountains.

  • Origin: Latin, Hungarian
  • Meaning: Carpathian
  • Pronunciation: KAAR-paa-Thee
  • Variations: Kárpáti
  • Namesakes: Andrej Karpathy, the Slovak-Canadian director of artificial intelligence and Autopilot Vision at Tesla.
  • Popularity: Kárpáthy is extremely rare worldwide, with 31 known occurrences in 2014, primarily in Hungary.
Geographical, Rare

Kilpatrick

Kilpatrick is an Anglo variation of the Gaelic MacGiolla Phádraig, meaning “son of the servant of St. Patrick.” It also represents various Scottish names, similar to Fitzpatrick and Kirkpatrick.

  • Origin: Latin, Irish
  • Meaning: Son of the servant of St. Patrick
  • Pronunciation: Kihl-PAE-trihk
  • Variations: McKilpatrick
  • Namesakes: Nancy Kilpatrick, a Canadian horror writer and winner of the 1993 Arthur Ellis Award. Carl Kilpatrick, an American basketball player for the New Orleans Jazz.
  • Popularity: Kilpatrick is rare worldwide, primarily used in the U.S., and ranked 559th in Northern Ireland in 2014.
Traditional, Common

Klerx

Klerx is a more unusual spelling of the Dutch Klerks, an occupational name for a “clerk” or “scribe.” It originated with the Latin “clericus,” and first appeared in North Holland.

  • Origin: Latin, Dutch
  • Meaning: Clerk
  • Pronunciation: KLEHRKS
  • Variations: Klerks, De Klerk
  • Popularity: Klerx is very rare worldwide and mainly used in the Netherlands.
Occupational, Unusual

Konstantinov

Konstantinov is based on the Slavic first name Konstantin and means “belonging to Konstantin.” As a name with Latin origins, Konstantin means “firm and stable” or “constant,” after Constantine the Great.

  • Origin: Latin, Slavic
  • Meaning: Belonging to Konstantine
  • Pronunciation: KAHN-Staan-tih-Nov
  • Variations: Konstantinova
  • Namesakes: Aleko Konstantinov, a Bulgarian writer known for the character of Bay Ganyo. Vladimir Konstantinov, a Russian-American ice hockey player for the Detroit Red Wings.
  • Popularity: Konstantinov is rare worldwide, primarily used in Russia, and ranked 139th in Transnistria in 2014.
Patronymic, Powerful

Lamar

Lamar relates to a place name in Normandy, France, taken from the French “la mare,” meaning “the pool.” It’s a variation of the French Lemaire and even a cute Spanish surname for those from Mar in Asturias.

  • Origin: Latin, French
  • Meaning: The pool
  • Pronunciation: Laa-MAAR
  • Variations: Lamarr
  • Namesakes: Adriana Lamar, a Mexican actress known for La Llorona (1933). Jason Lamar, an American football player for the Houston Texans.
  • Popularity: Lamar is rare worldwide, primarily used in the U.S., and ranked 705th in Mauritania in 2014.
Geographical, Unique

Larsson

For Scandinavian cultures, Larsson describes “the son of Lars,” a nickname for Lawrence. It dates back to the Latin Laurentius, meaning “man from Laurentum,” an Italian town known for laurel trees.

  • Origin: Latin, Scandinavian
  • Meaning: Son of Lawrence
  • Pronunciation: LAAR-suhn
  • Variations: Larson
  • Namesakes: Stieg Larsson, a Swedish writer known for the Millennium trilogy of crime novels. Johan Larsson, a Swedish musician and member of the band In Flames.
  • Popularity: Larsson is rare worldwide and mainly used in Sweden, ranking 6th in 2014.
Traditional, Patronymic

Leeuwenhoek

Leeuwenhoek is the most Dutch of Latin family names that are also long. It means “lion’s corner” in Dutch, after the Lion’s Gate area of Delft in the Netherlands.

  • Origin: Latin, Dutch
  • Meaning: Lion’s corner
  • Pronunciation: LUW-ehn-Hook
  • Variations: Van Leeuwenhoek
  • Popularity: Leeuwenhoek is extremely rare worldwide, with 99 known occurrences in 2014, primarily in the Netherlands.
Geographical, Rare

Lobo

Lobo derives from the Latin “lupo,” meaning “wolf.” It relates to the German “wiko” and is also an Indian surname based on Portuguese colonists.

  • Origin: Latin, Spanish
  • Meaning: Wolf
  • Pronunciation: LOHW-boh
  • Variations: Lobos
  • Namesakes: Stephen Lobo, a Canadian actor known for the series Continuum. Edu Lobo, a Brazilian musician who helped pioneer the bossa nova movement.
  • Popularity: Lobo is uncommon worldwide, mostly used in Mozambique, and ranked 167th in Portugal in 2014.
Nicknames, Powerful
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Lombardi

Lombardi originated as a surname for those from the Lombardy region in northern Italy. The town was named after the Lombards, a Germanic tribe who arrived in the 6th-century.

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: From Lombardy
  • Pronunciation: Lom-BAAR-dee
  • Variations: Lombardy
  • Namesakes: Giovanni Lombardi, an Italian road bicycling racer and gold medalist at the 1992 Summer Olympics. Vince Lombardi, an American football coach for the Green Bay Packers.
  • Popularity: Lombardi is rare worldwide and mainly used in Italy, where it ranked 20th in 2014.
Geographical, Traditional

Löwe

Löwe can appear as the English Low and Danish Løwe. It comes from the High German “löuwe,” meaning “lion” for a brave person. Löwe also denoted a home with the sign of a lion during the Middle Ages.

  • Origin: Latin, German
  • Meaning: Lion
  • Pronunciation: LOH
  • Variations: Loewe
  • Namesakes: Rob Lowe, an American actor known for The Outsiders (1983). Georgina Lowe, an English producer of the miniseries Tipping the Velvet (2002).
  • Popularity: Löwe is uncommon worldwide, primarily used in the U.S., and ranked 90th in Gambia in 2014.
Nicknames, Geographical

Magnusson

Magnusson is a patronymic name meaning “son of Magnus,” popular in Scandinavian countries. Many kings were named Magnus, like the 11th-century Magnus the Good.

  • Origin: Latin, Scandinavian
  • Meaning: Son of Magnus
  • Pronunciation: MAAG-nuhs-Ahn
  • Variations: Magnússon
  • Namesakes: Mats Magnusson, a Swedish footballer for Benfica. Sally Magnusson, a Scottish TV presenter of BBC Scotland’s Reporting Scotland.
  • Popularity: Magnusson is rare worldwide and mostly used in Sweden, ranking 20th in 2014.
Patronymic, Noble

Maier

Meier is a German variation of Meyer, which is thought to mean “mayor.” In the original Latin, Meier refers to a “farmer,” of which there are plenty in Germany.

  • Origin: Latin, German
  • Meaning: Farmer
  • Pronunciation: MAEYR
  • Variations: Meyer
  • Namesakes: Vivian Maier, an American photographer featured in the documentary Finding Vivian Maier (2013). Jonathan Maier, a German basketball player for the Nürnberg Falcons.
  • Popularity: Maier is uncommon worldwide, mainly used in Germany, and ranked 21st in Austria in 2014.
Occupational, Common

Mandelbaum

Mandelbaum is a primarily Jewish surname adopted in Germany that translates to “almond tree.” It’s more prevalent in the U.S. and Israel than anywhere else these days.

  • Origin: Latin, German
  • Meaning: Almond tree
  • Pronunciation: MAAN-dehl-Baum
  • Variations: Mendelbaum
  • Namesakes: Albert Mandelbaum, an Israeli chess player who competed at the Israeli Chess Championship. Ken Mandelbaum, an American writer known for A Chorus Line and the Musicals of Michael Bennett (1989).
  • Popularity: Mandelbaum is very rare worldwide, primarily used in the U.S., and ranked 1,479th in Israel in 2014.
Geographical, Unusual

Marchi

Marchi is the plural Italian form of Marco, sometimes appearing as Marchino. It’s based on the Latin Marcus, from the name of Mars, the Roman god of war. Marchi is also a village in Iran.

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: Plural of Marco
  • Pronunciation: MAAR-Chee
  • Variations: De Marchi
  • Namesakes: Ettore Marchi, an Italian footballer for Branca. John J. Marchi, a member of the New York State Senate from 1957 to 2006.
  • Popularity: Marchi is rare worldwide and primarily used in Italy, where it ranked 131st in 2014.
Powerful, Ancient

Marek

Marek means “descendant of Marek” in Polish and “belonging to Mars.” Marek is the Slavic form of the Latin Marcus, based on Mars, the Roman god of war.

  • Origin: Latin, Slavic
  • Meaning: War-like
  • Pronunciation: MAHR-ehk
  • Variations: Maraketh
  • Namesakes: Krzysztof Marek, a Polish rower who competed at the 1972 Summer Olympics. John Marek, an English member of Parliament from 1999 to 2007.
  • Popularity: Marek is rare worldwide, mainly used in Poland, and ranked 20th in the Czech Republic in 2014.
Powerful, Traditional

Marinović

Marinović spans many Slavic cultures, where it refers to a “descendant of Marin.” It’s made up of “Mario,” meaning “of the sea,” and the suffix “(ov)ić,” meaning “son.”

  • Origin: Latin, Serbo-Croatian
  • Meaning: Son of the sea
  • Pronunciation: Maa-RIYN-ow-Vitch
  • Variations: Marinovich
  • Namesakes: Nikola Marinović, a Serbian-Austrian handball player for Crvena Zvezda. Miodrag Marinovic, a Chilean member of the Chamber of Deputies from 2010 to 2014.
  • Popularity: Marinović is rare worldwide and primarily used in Chile.
Traditional, Uncommon

McCleary

McCleary is a Celtic-based surname meaning “son of the clergyman” from the Gaelic MacCléirigh. It also means “son of the priest,” making it both patronymic and occupational all at once.

  • Origin: Latin, Celtic
  • Meaning: Son of the cleric
  • Pronunciation: Mak-KLEER-iy
  • Variations: MacCleary
  • Namesakes: Urie McCleary, an American art director and winner of two Academy Awards. Boyd McCleary, the Northern Irish High Commissioner to Malaysia from 2006 to 2010.
  • Popularity: McCleary is rare worldwide and mostly used in the U.S., ranking 1,067th in Northern Ireland in 2014.
Traditional, Patronymic

Merrick

Like other patronymic Latin last names, Merrick means “the son of Merick.” It comes from Meuric, a Welsh form of Maurice,” that also appears as the Irish Ó’Mearadhaigh.

  • Origin: Latin, Welsh
  • Meaning: Son of Merick
  • Pronunciation: MEH-Rihk
  • Variations: Merick
  • Namesakes: Raymond F. Merrick, a member of the Kansas House of Representatives from 2013 to 2017. Joseph Merrick, an Englishman whose deformities caused him to be known as the Elephant Man.
  • Popularity: Merrick is rare worldwide, mainly used in the U.S., and ranked 1,554th in Wales in 2014.
Unique, Patronymic
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Meyer

Meyer represents the German title of “the mayor” and was also used as a “bailiff” or “steward.” The German “mei(g)er” means “manager of a country estate” from the Latin “maior domus,” meaning “headman of a household.”

  • Origin: Latin, German
  • Meaning: Mayor
  • Pronunciation: MAEY-ehr
  • Variations: Meyr, Meier, Mayer
  • Namesakes: Greg Meyer, an American long-distance runner who was the last American to win the Boston Marathon until 2014. Christoph Meyer, a German member of the Bundestag since 2017.
  • Popularity: Meyer ranked 719th worldwide and is primarily used in Germany, where it ranked 6th in 2014.
Occupational, Popular

Millhouse

Millhouse was originally related to a location called “the mill-house,” where a miller lived. It stems from the Middle English “milne-hous,” meaning “building with a mill in it.”

  • Origin: Latin, English
  • Meaning: At the millhouse
  • Pronunciation: MIHL-Haus
  • Variations: Millhus
  • Namesakes: Robin Millhouse, the 39th Attorney-General of South Australia from 1968 to 1970.
  • Popularity: Millhouse is very rare worldwide and mostly used in the U.S.
Rare, Geographical

Montagne

Montagne is a French name meaning “mountain” that originated in Languedoc. It was given to someone “living on or near a hill” based on the Old French “montaine,” meaning “small mountain.”

  • Origin: Latin, French
  • Meaning: At the hill
  • Pronunciation: Maan-TAEYN-yeh
  • Variations: La Montagne
  • Namesakes: Gilbert Montagné, a French musician, made a Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters in 1982. Renée Montagne, an American radio journalist co-host of NPR’s Morning Edition.
  • Popularity: Montagne is rare worldwide and mainly used in France, ranking 596th in 2014.
Geographical, Unique

Morales

Morales means “son of Moral,” meaning “right and proper” in Spanish. It can refer to “someone from Morales,” the name for two towns in Spain. Morales is the plural of the Latin “morum,” meaning “blackberry tree,” and is a town in Guatemala.

  • Origin: Latin, Spanish
  • Meaning: Mulberry bush
  • Pronunciation: Mohr-AH-lehs
  • Variations: Moralez
  • Namesakes: Natalie Morales, an American moderator for the program The Talk. Ramón Villeda Morales, the President of Honduras from 1957 to 1963.
  • Popularity: Morales ranked 170th worldwide, is primarily used in Mexico, and ranked 5th in Guatemala in 2014.
Geographical, Popular

Morrison

Morrison denotes “the son of Maurice (or Morris).” It originally referred to the “Moors” when it arrived in Great Britain. It also links to the Irish surname O’Muirgheasáin, from Muirgheas, meaning “sea valor.”

  • Origin: Latin, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Son of Maurice
  • Pronunciation: MAWR-ah-Sohn
  • Variations: Morisson
  • Namesakes: Keith Morrison, a Canadian journalist and correspondent for Dateline NBC since 1995. Reece Morrison, an American football player for the Cleveland Browns.
  • Popularity: Morrison ranked 1,919th worldwide, is mostly used in the U.S., and ranked 16th in Scotland in 2014.
Common, Patronymic

Mullens

Mullens appears as O’Maolain in the original Gaelic, from “maol,” meaning “bald.” It’s associated with the French de Molines and is a Dutch occupational name for a miller.

  • Origin: Latin, Gaelic
  • Meaning: From Molinas
  • Pronunciation: MUH-Lehns
  • Variations: Mullen, Mullins
  • Popularity: Mullens is rare worldwide and mainly used in the U.S.
Geographical, Nicknames

Nazarian

Nazarian is a shorter form of Nazarethian, named after Nazareth. Many Armenian last names are based on Christianity, once Armenia converted in the 4th-century CE. The traditional “-ian” suffix means “belonging to the family of.”

  • Origin: Latin, Armenian
  • Meaning: Son of Nazar
  • Pronunciation: Naa-ZAA-riy-Ahn
  • Variations: Nazaryan
  • Namesakes: Eric Nazarian, an Armenian-American director known for The Blue Hour (2007). Vera Nazarian, an Armenian-Russian-American fantasy writer known for Dreams of the Compass Rose.
  • Popularity: Nazarian is rare worldwide and primarily used in the U.S.
Patronymic, Ancient

Negrescu

Negrescu means “son of the black-haried one.” It’s based on the root “negru,” meaning “black,” and was possibly used for those with a darker complexion.

  • Origin: Latin, Romanian
  • Meaning: Son of Negru
  • Pronunciation: Neh-GREAS-kuw
  • Namesakes: Igor Negrescu, a Moldavian head coach of FC Dacia Chişinău. Ion Negrescu, the Romanian Mayor of Chișinău from 1928 to 1931.
  • Popularity: Negrescu is rare worldwide, mostly used in Romania, and ranked 881st in Moldova in 2014.
Unique, Traditional

Nieves

Nieves comes from the Spanish Virgin Mary title, Nuestra Señora de las Nieves. It means “Our Lady of the Snows,” as one of the prettiest names given to babies born on August 5th. This date is known for a miraculous snowfall in Rome.

  • Origin: Latin, Spanish
  • Meaning: Snows
  • Pronunciation: NYEV-ehs
  • Variations: Neaves
  • Namesakes: Juan Nieves, a Puerto Rican baseball pitching coach for the Detroit Tigers. Nelson Nieves, a Venezuelan fencer who competed at the 1952 Summer Olympics.
  • Popularity: Nieves is rare worldwide, mainly used in Mexico, and ranked 52nd in Puerto Rico in 2014.
Unique, Common

Olmos

Olmos refers to a place “where oak trees are abundant” and originated in Castille, Spain. The Spanish “olmo” means “elm,” plus Olmos is used for place names in Uruguay, Peru, and Spain.

  • Origin: Latin, Spanish
  • Meaning: Elm trees
  • Pronunciation: OWL-mohs
  • Variations: Olmo
  • Namesakes: Edward James Olmos, an American actor known for Stand and Deliver (1988). Giuliana Olmos, a Mexican tennis player who peaked at 343rd in 2019.
  • Popularity: Olmos is rare worldwide, primarily used in Mexico, and ranked 254th in Argentina in 2014.
Geographical, Common
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Pabst

Pabst describes someone who “performs sacerdotal functions,” like marriage or funeral services. It’s taken from the Middle German “bābest,” meaning “pope,” and is also a nickname for a “priest” or “self-important” person.

  • Origin: Latin, German
  • Meaning: Pope
  • Pronunciation: PAHBST
  • Variations: Pabste
  • Namesakes: Frederick Pabst, a German-American brewer who founded the Pabst Brewing Company. G.W. Pabst, an Austrian director known for Pandora’s Box (1929).
  • Popularity: Pabst is rare worldwide and mostly used in Germany, where it ranked 865th in 2014.
Unusual, Nicknames

Panza

Panza is an Italian nickname for a “fat” or “greedy” person based on “panza,” meaning “paunch.” Panza is a location in the district of Forio in Naples.

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: Belly
  • Pronunciation: PAAN-Zaa
  • Variations: Pansa
  • Namesakes: Giuseppe Panza, an Italian art collector with a 2,500-piece collection of modern art.
  • Popularity: Panza is rare worldwide and mainly used in Italy, ranking 1,626th in 2014.
Nicknames, Uncommon

Pascual

Pascual is like many patronymic Latin surnames and means “descendant of Pascual,” the Spanish version of Pasqual. It originated with the Latin “paschalis,” referring to “Easter.”

  • Origin: Latin, Spanish
  • Meaning: Easter
  • Pronunciation: PAAS-kwaal
  • Variations: Pasqual
  • Namesakes: Jake Pascual, a Filipino basketball player for the NLEX Road Warriors. Piolo Pascual, a Filipino actor and winner of nine PMPC Star Awards for Movies.
  • Popularity: Pascual is uncommon worldwide and primarily used in the Philippines, where it ranked 55th in 2014.
Ancient, Patronymic

Patton

Patton is a cool version of Patrick, taken from the Latin “patricius,” meaning “nobleman” or “patrician.” It refers to a “son of Patrick” in the form of Patun or Pat(e), the antiquated nickname for Patrick.

  • Origin: Latin, English
  • Meaning: Son of Patrick
  • Pronunciation: PAET-ahn
  • Variations: Patten, Pattin
  • Namesakes: George S. Patton, a U.S. Army general who presided over the Allied invasion of Normandy in 1944. James Patton, the Lieutenant Governor of Mississippi from 1820 to 1822.
  • Popularity: Patton is rare worldwide, mostly used in the U.S., and ranked 196th in Northern Ireland in 2014.
Traditional, Patronymic

Paulauskas

Paulauskas is the Lithuanian masculine form of a name that translates to Pawlowski in Polish. It’s rooted in various place names like Pawłów and Pawłowo and focuses on Paweł, a Polish variation of Paul.

  • Origin: Latin, Lithuanian
  • Meaning: Unknown
  • Pronunciation: Pawl-AHS-kaas
  • Variations: Paulauskienė, Paulauskaitė
  • Namesakes: Modestas Paulauskas, a Soviet-Lithuanian basketball player named one of FIBA’s 50 Greatest Players in 1991. Artūras Paulauskas, the acting president of Lithuania from April to July 2004.
  • Popularity: Paulauskas is rare worldwide and mainly used in Lithuania, ranking 26th in 2014.
Unique, Uncommon

Pavlov

Pavlov means “the son of Paul,” meaning “small” as the original Latin Paulus. It’s quite common in Russia and appears often in Bulgaria.

  • Origin: Latin, Russian
  • Meaning: Son of Pavel
  • Pronunciation: PAHV-lov
  • Variations: Pavlova
  • Namesakes: Oleg Pavlov, a Russian writer and 2002 winner of the Russian Booker Prize. Valentin Pavlov, the 11th Prime Minister of the Soviet Union from January to August 1991.
  • Popularity: Pavlov is uncommon worldwide and primarily used in Russia, where it ranked 28th in 2014.
Traditional, Popular

Pistorius

Pistorious is a more complicated occupational name for a baker than the German Bakker. It’s a primarily Dutch variation deriving from the Latin “pistor,” meaning “baker” or “miller.”

  • Origin: Latin, Dutch
  • Meaning: Baker
  • Pronunciation: Pihs-TOHR-ee-Uhs
  • Variations: Pistor
  • Namesakes: Caren Pistorius, a South African-New Zealand actress known for Slow West (2015). Micki Pistorius, the first forensic profiler in South Africa.
  • Popularity: Pistorius is very rare worldwide and primarily used in South Africa.
Occupational, Rare

Poirot

Poirot is based on the French “poire,” meaning “pear,” and translates to “little pear.” It may have been used for a pear merchant or someone residing near pear trees. Poirot is best known for the Agatha Christie detective Hercule Poirot.

  • Origin: Latin, French
  • Meaning: Little pear
  • Pronunciation: PWAA-Roh
  • Variations: Poiroe, Poirrot
  • Namesakes: Catherine Poirot, a French swimmer and bronze medalist at the 1984 Summer Olympics. Gilbert Poirot, a French ski jumper who competed at the 1972 Winter Olympics.
  • Popularity: Poirot is rare worldwide and mainly used in France, ranking 1,273rd in 2014.
Famous, Occupational

Purcell

Purcell symbolizes a nickname for “the porcell,” referring to a “young pig.” It originated with the Latin “porcellus,” from “porcus,” meaning “pig,” and was used for a “swineherd.”

  • Origin: Latin, English
  • Meaning: Young pig
  • Pronunciation: Puhr-SEHL
  • Variations: Purssell
  • Namesakes: Steve Purcell, an American cartoonist who created the Sam & Max franchise that won the 2007 Eisner Award. Sarah Purcell, an American TV host of ABC’s Home (1992 to 1994).
  • Popularity: Purcell is rare worldwide, primarily used in the U.S., and ranked 223rd in Ireland in 2014.
Nicknames, Unusual

Redondo

Redondo is the name of various places located in Portugal and Galicia. It’s also used as a nickname for someone heavy, from the Latin “rotundus,” meaning “round.”

  • Origin: Latin, Spanish
  • Meaning: Round
  • Pronunciation: Reh-DOHN-doh
  • Variations: Arredondo
  • Namesakes: Dolores Redondo, a Spanish writer and winner of the 2016 Premio Planeta de Novela literary prize. Federico Redondo, an Argentine footballer for Argentinos Juniors.
  • Popularity: Redondo is rare worldwide and mostly used in Spain, where it ranked 114th in 2014.
Nicknames, Geographical
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Rojas

Rojas relates to the Spanish “roja,” meaning “red.” It was primarily given to those with “red hair” based on the Latin “russus,” meaning “reddish.”

  • Origin: Latin, Spanish
  • Meaning: Red
  • Pronunciation: ROW-haas
  • Variations: Rojo
  • Namesakes: Isaac Rojas, the Vice President of Argentina from 1955 to 1958. Óscar Ricardo Rojas, a Mexican footballer for Deportivo Toluca.
  • Popularity: Rojas ranked 222nd worldwide, is mainly used in Mexico, and ranked 3rd in Chile in 2014
Popular, Traditional

Romanov

Romanov is linked to the first name Roman, given to a “citizen of Rome.” It first appeared as the Latin Romanus, meaning “son of Roman,” and is associated with the Russian royal family.

  • Origin: Latin, Russian
  • Meaning: Roman
  • Pronunciation: ROUW-maa-Nawf
  • Variations: Romanoff
  • Namesakes: Nicholas II (born Nikolai Romanov), the last Emperor of Russia from 1894 to 1917. Alexander Romanov, a Russian ice hockey player for the New York Islanders.
  • Popularity: Romanov is uncommon worldwide and primarily used in Russia, where it ranked 34th in 2014.
Famous, Noble

Roosevelt

Roosevelt describes someone “living near a rose farm or field” in Dutch. Roosevelt is alone among Latin family names used for two U.S. presidents.

  • Origin: Latin, Dutch
  • Meaning: Rose field
  • Pronunciation: RUW-zaa-Vehlt, row-zuh-velt
  • Variations: Van Roosevelt, Rosevelt
  • Namesakes: Franklin D. Roosevelt, the 32nd president of the U.S. from 1933 to 1945. Naaman Roosevelt, an American football player for the Buffalo Bills.
  • Popularity: Roosevelt is very rare worldwide and mostly used in the U.S.
Famous, Geographical

Rosenberg

Rosenberg means “rose mountain” in German and became a popular Yiddish surname connected with Royzenbarg. It also has Swedish roots made up of “rosen,” meaning “rose,” and “berg,” meaning “hill.”

  • Origin: Latin, German
  • Meaning: Rose mountain
  • Pronunciation: ROH-zehn-Berg
  • Variations: Rozenberg
  • Namesakes: Göran Rosenberg, a Swedish writer whose book A Brief Stop on the Road from Auschwitz, won the 2012 August Prize for literature. Ariel Rosenberg, an Israeli basketball player with the Israel national basketball team.
  • Popularity: Rosenberg is rare worldwide, mainly used in the U.S., and ranked 49th in Israel in 2014.
Geographical, Common

Roux

Roux was originally a nickname for a “red-haired person” based on the Old French “rous” and Latin “russeus,” meaning “red.” It refers to Le Roux, the name of several French locales.

  • Origin: Latin, French
  • Meaning: Red-haired
  • Pronunciation: ROO
  • Variations: Le Roux
  • Namesakes: Ludovic Roux, a French-Nordic skier and bronze medalist at the 1998 Winter Olympics. Michel Albert Roux, an English-French chef who owns the two-Michelin-star London restaurant Le Gavroche.
  • Popularity: Roux is rare worldwide and primarily used in France, ranking 16th in 2014.
Nicknames, Unique

Salinas

Salinas is an occupational “S” surname for a “worker in a salt mine” or someone “from Salinas” in Spain. It’s taken from the Latin “salinae,” meaning “salt mine,” from “sal,” meaning “salt.”

  • Origin: Latin, Spanish
  • Meaning: Saltworks
  • Pronunciation: Saa-LIY-nahz
  • Variations: Salina
  • Namesakes: Ric Salinas, a Salvadoran–American actor who co-founded the comedy group Culture Clash. María Elena Salinas, an American co-anchor for Noticiero Univision.
  • Popularity: Salinas ranked 940th worldwide, is mostly used in Mexico, and ranked 70th in Paraguay in 2014.
Occupational, Popular

Sarkissian

Sarkissian uses the Armenian male name Sarkis, meaning “protector” and “shepherd.” It was first derived from the Latin Sergius, meaning “servant.”

  • Origin: Latin, Armenian
  • Meaning: Son of Sarkis
  • Pronunciation: Saar-KIH-siy-Ahn
  • Variations: Sarkisian, Sargsyan
  • Namesakes: Karnig Sarkissian, an Armenian-American singer known for Armenian patriotic songs. Armen Sarkissian, the Prime Minister of Armenia from 1996 to 1997.
  • Popularity: Sarkissian is very rare worldwide and mainly used in the U.S.
Traditional, Rare

Savage

Savage is the English-Norman equivalent of someone’s last name, such as Wild. It comes from the Middle English “salvage,” meaning “untamed,” and from the Latin “salvaticus,” meaning “man of the woods.”

  • Origin: Latin, English
  • Meaning: Untamed
  • Pronunciation: SAA-Vahg
  • Variations: Sauvage
  • Namesakes: Richard Savage, an English musician with the rock band Def Leppard. Robbie Savage, a Welsh footballer for Macclesfield.
  • Popularity: Savage is rare worldwide, primarily used in the U.S., and ranked 93rd in Israel in 2014.
Nicknames, Popular

Scrivens

Scrivens is an English occupational name for a “scribe” or “clerk,” from the Middle English “scrivein.” It comes from the Latin “scribanus,” from “scribere,” meaning “to write.”

  • Origin: Latin, English
  • Meaning: Scribe
  • Pronunciation: SKRIH-vehnz
  • Variations: Scriven
  • Namesakes: Ben Scrivens, a Canadian ice hockey player for the Toronto Maple Leafs. Stephen Scrivens, an English footballer for Brentford.
  • Popularity: Scrivens is rare worldwide, mostly used in England, and ranked 1,584th in Wales in 2014.
Occupational, Unique

Séverin

Severin derives from the Latin “severus,” meaning “serious” or “stern.” It appeared as Severinus in ancient Rome and was given to many early Christian saints.

  • Origin: Latin, French
  • Meaning: Stern
  • Pronunciation: SEH-veh-Rihn
  • Variations: Severn
  • Namesakes: Jay Severin, an American political talk radio host at TheBlaze Radio Network. Toni Severin, a New Zealand member of parliament since 2020.
  • Popularity: Séverin is extremely rare worldwide, with 112 known occurrences in 2014, mainly in France.
Rare, Ancient
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Sörensen

Sörensen means “descendant of Søren” in Danish and comes from the Latin “severinus,” meaning “strict.” In Norwegian, it appears as Sørensen.

  • Origin: Latin, Danish
  • Meaning: Son of Soren
  • Pronunciation: SOER-uhn-Sahn
  • Variations: Sorenson
  • Namesakes: Sean Sorensen, an Irish tennis player and the first Irishman in a Grand Slam since 1968. Tonny Sorensen, a Danish entrepreneur associated with the clothing brand Von Dutch.
  • Popularity: Sörensen is rare worldwide and primarily used in Sweden, where it ranked 392nd in 2014.
Patronymic, Traditional

Tyrrell

Tyrrell comes from the Old French “tirer,” meaning “to draw,” and is associated with “tirand,” meaning “one who pulls on the reins.” It’s been used as a nickname for someone “stubborn” and also means “the son of Turold.”

  • Origin: Latin, Irish
  • Meaning: Stubborn person
  • Pronunciation: Tih-REHL
  • Variations: Tyrell
  • Namesakes: Emmett Tyrrell, an American founder and editor-in-chief of The American Spectator. Susan Tyrrell, an American actress known for Fat City (1972).
  • Popularity: Tyrrell is rare worldwide, mostly used in the U.S., and ranked 452nd in Ireland in 2014.
Nicknames, Common

Tzetzes

Tzetzes is considered a medieval Latin surname deriving from the Byzantine Greek “tzetze.” Its meaning is unclear, but “tzetze” is an African fly known to carry infections.

  • Origin: Latin, Greek
  • Meaning: Unknown
  • Pronunciation: TZEHT-zes
  • Variations: Tztzis
  • Namesakes: John Tzetzes, a 12th-century Byzantine poet who contributed to the study of ancient Greek literature.
  • Popularity: Tzetzes is extremely rare worldwide, with just one known occurrence in 2014 in Greece.
Ancient, Unusual

Ungaretti

Ungaretti is Italian but is linked to the High German “ungarn,” referring to someone from Hungary. The fall of the Hungarians in Italy around 1,000 CE likely influenced Ungaretti, especially in the Lucca province.

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: Hungarian
  • Pronunciation: Uhn-gaa-REH-tee
  • Variations: Ungaratti
  • Namesakes: Giuseppe Ungaretti, an Italian poet and winner of the 1970 Neustadt International Prize for Literature.
  • Popularity: Ungaretti is very rare worldwide and mainly used in Brazil.
Unique, Rare

Vaccaro

Vaccaro means “one who tends cows” as an Italian occupational name for a “cowherd.” It comes from the Latin “vaccarius,” from “vacca,” meaning “cow.”

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: Cowherd
  • Pronunciation: Vaa-KAA-roh
  • Variations: Vaccari
  • Namesakes: Brenda Vaccaro, an American actress known for the TV movie The Shape of Things in 1974. Francesco Vaccaro, an Italian footballer for Avezzano.
  • Popularity: Vaccaro is rare worldwide and primarily used in Italy, ranking 287th in 2014.
Occupational, Traditional

Vestri

Vesti’s meaning isn’t certain, but it’s linked to the Italian town of Velletri near Rome. In Norse mythology, Vestri is the name of a dwarf who helps support the sky. It’s also the name of a sports club in Iceland.

  • Origin: Latin, Italian
  • Meaning: Unknown
  • Pronunciation: VEHS-tree
  • Variations: Vastri
  • Namesakes: Archimede Vestri, an Italian architect known for the design of the 1887 Loggia at the Piazza Indipendenza, Siena. René Vestri, a member of the Senate of France from 2008 to 2013.
  • Popularity: Vestri is very rare worldwide and mostly used in Italy.
Geographical, Rare

Vives

Vives is related to the Latin “vivas,” meaning “long life,” from “vivere,” meaning “to live.” It was a medieval good omen meaning “may you live,” appearing in Latin American countries and the U.S.

  • Origin: Latin, Spanish
  • Meaning: To live
  • Pronunciation: VIH-Vehs
  • Namesakes: Nuria Llagostera Vives, a Spanish tennis player who peaked at 35th in 2005. Carlos Vives, a Colombian singer with over 20 million records sold worldwide.
  • Popularity: Vives is rare worldwide, mainly used in Spain, and ranked 463rd in Costa Rica in 2014.
Unique, Common

Warwick

Warwick comes from the Old English “wering,” meaning “dam.” It was used for a “specialized farmstead” and is the name of many towns in England and North America.

  • Origin: Latin, English
  • Meaning: From Warwick
  • Pronunciation: WAAR-wihk
  • Variations: Warrick
  • Namesakes: Dionne Warwick, an American singer and one of 40 U.S. hit makers between 1955 and 1999. Lyn Warwick, an Australian member of the Queensland Legislative Assembly from 1995 to 1998.
  • Popularity: Warwick is rare worldwide and primarily used in England, where it ranked 1,020th in 2014.
Geographical, Traditional

Winogrodzki

Winogrodski is a traditional Polish spelling for Winograd, the Jewish form of Vinogradov. It means “grape vineyard” and refers to the Ukrainian town of Vinograd.

  • Origin: Latin, Polish
  • Meaning: Grapevine
  • Pronunciation: Winn-ow-GROHD-skee
  • Variations: Winogradsky
  • Popularity: Winogrodzki is very rare worldwide and primarily used in Poland.
Geographical, Rare

Zino

Zino is an Italian boy’s name and surname, short for other names ending in “-zino,” like Bonifazzino. It first described the Greek god Zeus and still appears today as a Greek social networking website.

  • Origin: Latin, Greek
  • Meaning: Gift of Zeus
  • Pronunciation: ZEEN-oh
  • Variations: Zinno
  • Popularity: Zino is very rare worldwide and mainly used in Algeria.
Ancient, Unique
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About the Author

Maryana Vestic

Maryana Vestic is a Brooklyn-based writer, editor, and food photographer with a background in entertainment Business Affairs. She studied film at NYU, Irish Theatre Studies at Trinity College Dublin, and has an MFA in Creative Writing Nonfiction from The New School. She loves cooking, baking, hiking, and horror films, as well as running a local baking business in Brooklyn with her boyfriend.
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