If your last name ends in “-ez,” what does it mean? And what last name means “bold voyager?”

A few weeks back we asked readers to suggest last names to be explored and explained. The surnames with the most requests happened to end in –ez. We like to make you happy. First, we need to touch on how many names originating in Spain function.

Most Hispanic surnames, including those that end in –ez, fall into a few general categories.  Many family names are based on a character or physical trait describing the original bearer of the name. For example, if your last name is Delgado, it’s possible that your great-great-great grandfather was a skinny fellow. (Delgado means “thin” is Spanish.)

Geographical surnames are also very common. These names are formed based on the location where a family lived — sometimes centuries ago.

There are also occupational surnames, which also date back centuries. This is a category that many non-Spanish surnames fall into as well. Take Smith or Miller for example.

But as for the common suffix –ezpatronymic considerations are at play. These family names are formed by adding a suffix to the end of a father’s name. The suffix –ez means “descendant of.”

(The name with the most requests actually was quite presidential — Barack Obama. Learn what “Barack” and “Obama” literally mean, here.)

Here are the definitions and contexts of some of the most frequent –ez names:

Hernandez means “son of Hernando” or “son of Fernando,” which derives from the German name Ferdinand, or “bold voyager.”

• Gonzalez means “son of Gonzalo.” The name Gonzalo originates with the medieval name Gundisalvus. The word part gund means “war.”

• Perez means “son of Pero” and other versions of the name, such as Pedro and Petros. Pedro means “rock” in Spanish. It’s believed that the name comes from the apostle Simon, who Jesus called a rock, or foundation, of the church. The name may have also derived from “peral,” the name of a pear tree, or as a variation of the Sephardic Jewish surname Peretz.

Gomez means son of Gome or Gomo. Gomme is the similar English surname. The Middle English word “gome” means “man.”

• Gutierrez means “son of Gutierre,” which means “he who rules.”

Lopez means “son of Lope.” Lope is a name that comes from Lupus, a Latin name meaning “wolf.”

Now it’s your turn. Are there other last names you’d like us to elucidate? Start typing.


  1. Maria -  September 23, 2015 - 1:38 pm

    Hello… I would like to inquire any info/background/origin on the following last names: (Thank you in advance for any information)

    de Peña (My Father’s Last Name)

    Dominguez (My Mother’s Maiden Last Name)

    Nunez (My husbands last name)

  2. Maribel -  September 20, 2015 - 7:49 pm

    I have been trying to find more information about my last name but have been unsuccessful, as of yet. My surname is NARVAEZ… Does anyone have any information about it?

  3. Monica pulido -  September 12, 2015 - 2:53 pm

    Can anyone tell me anything about my last name PULIDO?

  4. Jessica -  August 24, 2015 - 3:00 pm

    My family has been researching our last name “Mansanarez” for years and can’t find anything. Your help would be greatly appreciated!!!!

    • Spaniard -  August 31, 2015 - 4:38 pm

      Hi. Being a spaniard myself and living really near to the river “manzanares” im gonna tell you:
      Mansanarez is actually a misspelling of the word “manzanares”. This is a very common thing in latin-american countries who tend to replace the z with the s.(the habit of replacing the z with the s is called “seseo”).
      Your last name comes from the word Manzana wich means aplle. Manzanares are the fields where you have apple trees.
      Probably your great-great-great-great-great….grandfather lived by an apple field.
      There is a river in spain that crosses Madrid that is called manzanares.


    • Marlene -  September 13, 2015 - 4:22 pm

      I also cannot find anything on my last name Alanis. Is there anyway u can help me? I looked everywhere on line. I would like to know what country this last name is from? Thank you I would really appreciate it.

      • zapatero -  September 17, 2015 - 1:20 pm

        It comes from Ala .. maybe you are the next profet … dont let them take pictures of you

  5. Hugo -  August 2, 2015 - 1:40 am

    If someone can go really in depth with the last name Rodriguez I’d appreciate it.
    I’d like to know if they were ever involved in any order such has the Templar knights or something

    • The Kingmaker -  August 15, 2015 - 4:18 pm

      “If someone can go really in depth with the last name Rodriguez I’d appreciate it.”

      Rodriguez, (from the house of Rodrigo). Variation of Roderick. It is a name of Visigothic extraction. Roderick (from Proto-Germanic *Hrōþirīk(i)az, literally “[he who is] rich in glory”), also Roderik or Roderic, is a Germanic name, in various derived forms appearing as the name of several legendary and historical characters.

      The name appears in Old German as Hrodric, in Old English language as Hrēðrīc and Hroðricus, in Old East Norse as Rørik and Old West Norse as Hrœrekr. In the Primary chronicle, it appears as Russian: Рюрик, i.e. Rurik. In Spanish and Portuguese, it was rendered as Rodrigo, or in its short form, Ruy/Rui, and in Galician, the name is Roi. In Arabic, it appears as Ludhriq (لذريق), used to refer to the last king of the Visigoths.

  6. Eric O'Campo -  July 15, 2015 - 7:48 pm

    Hello my surname O’Campo and would like to know its origins and meaning.. Thank you..

  7. Tarsem Singh -  May 9, 2015 - 2:50 am

    Matharus were fierce warriors especially during, the time when the Matharu tribe, had converted to Sikhism; they fought numbers of wars for Guru Gobind Singh, Banda Singh Bahadur and Jassa Singh Ramgarhia.

    ‘Matharu or Matharoo (ਮਠਾੜੂ in Gurmukhī script) is a prominent Sikh clan belonging to the Jatt tribe.

    Sir Denzil Ibbetson counted the Matharus as one of the major Jatt tribes of the Punjab and the Northwest Frontier Province, centred in Amritsar, Jalandhar, Lahore and Ludhiana.

    The origin of Matharu was a Jatt clan.Later they were thought of Ramgharia / Tarkhan /Jatt etc. Matharu Jatts are dominant in some villages of Punjab including Jattana, Chounkimaan, Nakodar and areas around Moga. Matharus are widely known as successful landowning farmers through Punjab today. Matharus claiming Jadaun Rajput ancestry are found in Sialkot, Narowal, Gujranwala, Hoshiarpur, Jalandhar, Patiala and Ludhiana districts.

    Variant forms of the name include Matharoo, Matharu, Matharo, Mathru and Matroo. Matharu’s live in Canada, India, U.K., USA etc.

    They originate from the regions of Amritsar, Jalandhar, Hoshiarpur, Lahore and Ludhiana in Punjab. The name Matharu appears on one of the marble slabs on the premises of the Harmandir Sahib (Golden Temple) in Amritsar. Matharus built battleships in olden times, and a cannon in the Ranthambore Fort at Rajasthan also bears the name Matharu. Matharus also built weapons for and fought in the armies of Guru Gobind Singh, Prithviraj Chauhan and Akbar.

    Punjab Gazetteer says of the Matharus, in a description of the Amritsar District,They possess all the good qualities and martial spirit. Thus in the military atmosphere they have the honour to share up to this day, with their allies, the topmost position among the Brotherhood of Lions.[verified]

  8. gleandel -  May 4, 2015 - 7:30 pm

    How about my family name ARANJUEZ? Is there any you can help me to locate mine? Thanks

    • zapatero -  September 17, 2015 - 1:02 pm

      descendant from concertists who really liked to play same name concert

  9. Charlie Sanchez -  April 21, 2015 - 2:33 pm

    What is the meaning of Sanchez ? I understand it stands for “son of Sancho”, is there any other meaning ?

    • Gabe Chaidez -  May 3, 2015 - 7:58 pm

      Please note that the “ez” was introduced in Mexico around 1940-50. Before that time, most surnames were “es” or no “s” at all. The name Gomes was common but not Gomes. My last name we originally, Echaide , originated from Etxaide (Basque). That became De Chaide, then Chaide, Then Chaides, then Chaidez. I think Mexico tried to standardize spelling of names and a few names were spelled ez but then most names became “ez” That is why “ES” – “from”

      • KristianRenoir -  August 10, 2015 - 3:03 pm

        Gabe Chaidez, my friend I think you need to check your dates. Benito Juarez and Porfirio Diaz were in Mexico in the 1800′s.

    • sauroctono -  May 12, 2015 - 3:27 pm

      Hi Charlie. My surname’s also Sánchez. I’m from Spain. “Sancho” comes from latin “Sanctus” (Saint). Therefore, “Sánchez” means “Son of the Saint”.

      • David Sanchez -  September 21, 2015 - 7:33 pm

        Curiosity struck me today. Thanks to this url I was able to find the meaning of my name. Living in a heavily populated Hispanic community, I never thought to research such a topic. The reason for this is that around these parts my name is quite common. Upon further investigation I have learned that my name means, “son of beloved saint”! I no longer acknowledge my name as mundane; rather I am proud to be called David Sanchez!

  10. The Kingmaker -  March 30, 2015 - 7:23 pm

    Manriquez is an hispanicized version of the Visigothic (Germanic) name ALMANRICH. Composed of two Gothic root words : Man (Man) + Ric (kingdom, power) the name was introduced into Spain (from France) in the 1100s. Wikipedia search : “Manrique de Lara”.

  11. Sharon -  March 16, 2015 - 10:56 pm

    Can you tell me about the last name ending in (ine or ne) such as Valentine which I really believe was given to our ancestors who were slaves before coming to America?

  12. Chicken nuggets -  March 11, 2015 - 11:42 am

    I am moist. moist of moist. moister than moist. i am the king of moist

  13. Emily Rodriguez -  March 5, 2015 - 7:39 am

    What do the names Rodriguez and Ramirez mean

    • Nicki Martinez -  March 10, 2015 - 12:37 pm

      What does the surname Sánchez mean?

      • Elder Yaron Cortez -  March 30, 2015 - 11:22 am

        and EZ= Eres Zion. THE HOLY ONES OF ZION

    • Elder Yaron Cortez -  March 30, 2015 - 11:19 am

      RODRIGUEZ means ROD = Power, and RIGU=Wealth, Rich and

    • Jose -  April 19, 2015 - 2:53 pm

      Rodriguez is son of Rodrigo, or descendant of Rodrigo.
      Same for Ramirez from the name Ramiro.

    • Nancy Ramirez -  July 17, 2015 - 9:33 am

      Rodriguez is son of Rodrigo and Ramirez is son of Ramiro. I know because my last name is Ramirez and mother’s last name is Rodriguez. I wish there was a deeper meaning to our surnames though.

  14. Bia -  February 20, 2015 - 10:02 am

    Do you have any information on the last name Guembes or Wuembes? Great-grandfather on husbands dad side was German who immigrated to El Salvador. I know the last name was changed due to political reasons but not sure what the original name or spelling really was.

  15. sherry M -  June 12, 2014 - 10:36 am

    I have a friend who has the last name Matinez. I would like to know if through time the “R” was dropped stemming from Martinez I cant find anything online about Matinez as a surname anywhere

  16. Isamar Vasquez -  April 17, 2014 - 2:03 pm

    Hi I read your article and was curious about the last name vasquez? also I wanted to ask you my reason for researching this is because I was told by someone that the reason why I have a Z in my last name is because in those times thats how a criminal would be identified in their name is this true?

    • monaliza velazquez -  November 27, 2014 - 1:43 am

      @Isamar vasquez actually what i Heard and researched that z and s were to distinguish if u were a slave master or a slave… ex. Velazquez velasques velazques…

  17. Vicente Guasch -  April 12, 2014 - 8:47 am

    I’m researching for the meaning and origin of the family name “Guasch”. I noticed that there are many of them living in Barcelona, Spain. Is it jewish?

    • A Catalan -  January 6, 2015 - 3:48 pm

      Guasch is a catalan surname, probably derived from Vasc, “basque” in English, so your surname is more or less related to Vasquez (same origin with different evolution).

  18. Cesar Cortez -  April 1, 2014 - 3:56 pm

    My last name is Cortez I’m so curious as to what it means

    • Elder Yaron Cortez -  March 30, 2015 - 11:16 am

      Cortez means Cort EZ or “Court Eres Zion” which means the “Court of God” or “The Laws of God” or “The Ten Commandments”

    • Jose -  April 19, 2015 - 2:54 pm

      Son or descendant of Martín

  19. RALPH GOMEZ -  February 5, 2014 - 5:06 pm

    please work on UMPIERRE,AND FARRIO…Have trouble finding anything on this names..

  20. Lazy Friggin Visigoths -  December 27, 2013 - 5:20 pm

    Hey guys, heres the 411 on the “EZ” :

    Spain was controlled by the Visigoths between the 5th and 8th centuries. However, the influence of the Gothic language (an East Germanic language) on Spanish was minimal because the invaders were already somewhat Romanized, were secluded in the upper echelons of society, and generally did not intermarry with the natives. Besides a few military words, Spanish borrowed the following from Gothic:

    The originally patronymic surname suffixes in -z (as in Díaz, Pérez, López, Ruiz, Muñoz, etc.) is from numerous Latinized Gothic genitives in -īcī, from original -iks.[1] Thus, Roderic(us) (→ Ruy) → Roderīcī ‘son of Roderick’ → Rodriz → Ruiz.

    Ralph Penny, A History of the Spanish Language, 2nd edn. (Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2002), 16.

  21. wolf tamer and tree puncher -  November 21, 2013 - 4:54 am

    What about “Ebaugh”? Or any other last name ending in “-baugh”?
    And what about “Wilder”?

  22. monique -  October 17, 2013 - 11:07 am

    what does my name mean in poraches

  23. melinazebeautiful -  April 9, 2013 - 10:59 pm

    Guys Spanish surnames that end in ez are patronymic traditions that have visigothic origin. The visigoths were a Germanic tribe (goths) who moved into spain and established kingdoms after the roman empire fell :)
    You can read more, just google it :)
    I really like Spanish surnames, I think they are very pretty <3 I especially like Gutierrez and Fernandez :) as for Italian names I like Ferrari haha and all the onces that end in ci or li
    I think Spanish and Italians have the best names haha they are just so pretty

  24. ANTONIO -  January 22, 2013 - 8:36 pm

    anyone can tell me about last name TAMEZ and about REYES pls. email me,,atmez17@gmail.com ,,,,,, thanks

  25. Eric (expert on Jewish ancestry) -  January 19, 2013 - 9:02 pm

    If your last name ended with EZ then you have Jewish ancestry. During the Spanish Inquisition (1478 – 1834) The Jews were made to convert to Catholic or leave the country or be tortured. Many of the Spanish Jews had to convert in fear of losing their lives. The way the Church could distinguish between the Catholic and the “Jewish-Catholic” was to add the suffix EZ after their last name.
    You should look up your ancestry and you will see your ancesters were JEWS.

    Good news is that Christians got the Bible from the Jews and Jesus Christ (the Mesiah, Hebrew called Yeshua) was a Jew, circumcized as a Jew, preached in the Jewish Temple, and had a Bar Mitzvah on his thirteenth birthday. HE fulfilled the old testament. Therefore, now you can be a Jewish Christian or (Mesianic Jew).

    • jose alvarez -  January 4, 2015 - 6:54 am

      Thank u for imformation. Do u have any more information? Ive been curios about my last name for a few months. Is a DNA test helpful.

    • Meghan -  January 7, 2015 - 12:49 pm

      My great grandfather on my mothers side, I have been told changed his name from Martinez to Martinel. So your telling me that I do indeed have Jewish Ancestry?
      My problem is I have no way of looking up my ancestry, but I would really love to know more about it especially because I am trying to find any information I can so I can be Eligible for Aliyah in Israel.

    • Dan -  February 25, 2015 - 4:51 am

      that’s Not all true when in fact anything that ends in EZ have in fact comes from patronymical instaces, that’s an equivalet of the SON from the English Derivative.

      • Jose -  April 19, 2015 - 3:07 pm

        That’s true. Actually the ending “ez” is in many words in spainsh, meaning quality of (and it is an usual way of turning an adjective into a noun. For example: rápido-rapidez; sandio, sandez; esbelto-esbeltez..).
        So someone from the lineage of Rodrigo would be told that “él es un Rodriguez” and to the group of his descendants “Ellos son los Rodriguez” (same for plural).

    • Erik -  May 23, 2015 - 11:47 pm

      My name is Erik Perez I really want to know more

  26. Lisa Peralta -  November 19, 2012 - 8:11 pm

    How about Peralta, Armendarez , and Villavicencio?? Please thanx for the info! 8)

  27. uriel -  October 16, 2012 - 11:52 am

    Another thing to add to some people’s questions about first names. Emmanuel/Rafael these have been adapted mostly by Hispanic culture but originate from Hebrew. Immanu-El means “god is with us” Rofe-el litereally means god and doctor in Hebrew or in translation god’s healing. These names are mentioned in Hebrew scriptures and the old testament.

  28. uriel -  October 16, 2012 - 11:43 am

    Names that end in ez are also known to be Spanish Jew’s who hid during the inquisition by changing their last names but adding ez to secretly distinguish themselves as Jews. Rodriguez, Alvarez, Martinez, Perez and names like these can be associated wtih ancestry of Spanish-Jewish origin. Remember before the inquisition there were a ton of Jews living in spain.

    I had a friend who was born in Mexico and she told me that her family had this long standing tradition for generations of lighting these candles on Friday night and having a meal. She never understood it and I explained to her that they were lighting shabbat candles and having shabbat dinner. Something most Jews and Israelis do every week.

  29. Ashley -  September 3, 2012 - 9:16 am

    what can i learn about Torrez and Guerrero?

  30. Lydia -  August 13, 2012 - 3:14 pm

    What can you tell me about Belmontez and Galvez

  31. Derein -  June 8, 2012 - 8:06 pm

    I am a hundred percent Guatemalan.

    • zapatero -  September 17, 2015 - 1:15 pm

      yes but you are 100 percent descendant from Guatepeoran

  32. Tracy -  May 5, 2012 - 6:13 pm

    What about Montez? And Cortez?

  33. patricia Hernandez -  April 23, 2012 - 4:17 pm

    how about Duarte? my bf last name mexican descendent

    • Elder Yaron Cortez -  March 30, 2015 - 11:27 am

      Hernandez means the bold voyagers of zion

  34. Arthur -  March 17, 2012 - 9:01 pm

    Hernaez??? I’ve been trying to find its origin, is it simply a deviation of hernandez?

  35. Otto -  March 16, 2012 - 10:30 pm

    The suffix-Ez means (Hernandez, Fernandez, etc) in Spanish meant son-of-hernan-or Fernando, just like in slavery, the son of john the slave, became Johnson, or the son of Michael, became Michaelson, or the son of Michael. ,
    EZ equal to son in Spanish as son does to English for blacks. In other words: son of hernan= Hernand-ez, son of Fernando= Fernand-ez, Mendez= son of Mando

  36. MHC -  February 27, 2012 - 10:48 am

    Eureka….I found it Re my question above)….here it is:
    ALPHABET (PHONETIC) – Devised for reasons of clarity in aviation voice radio, this is the current NATO version in global use:
    From ‘Aviation Glossary’ at URL http://aerofiles.com/glossary.html


  37. MHC -  February 27, 2012 - 10:32 am

    Okay you experts….what are the “Rules” for describing, helping others in spelling of our names, addresses etc? Example….for first name BRUCE……Binary for B; Radical for R; Ursula for U; Calorie for C; Edward for E. What do I know ?

    Q: Is there a ‘proper’, widely used list of these helpful ‘codes’ ?

  38. Ruler of Men -  January 31, 2012 - 11:31 pm

    Hey guys! All you folks out there with Germanic/Spanish last names, ever thought about changing them back to the original Germanic? ie :
    Henrique = Ham-Reich (homestead ruler) or
    Gonzalez = Gundislav (battle elf) ? I think that would be totally fu%$in cool!

    • zapatero -  September 17, 2015 - 1:19 pm

      Cause you cannot support yourself been hispanic? Ham means jamon which is made from Pork so you are like pig .. a rich pig change it to pigrich
      Gundislav comes from glundi(glande) and slav (from slave) make the connection yourself

  39. Cortez -  January 9, 2012 - 5:35 pm

    Is Cortez really Jewish? Ithought it was Spaniard.

    • Elder Yaron Cortez -  March 30, 2015 - 11:36 am

      It is Hebrew from Abraham, Israeli from Abraham’s grandson Israel, and Yahudi from Israel’s fourth son Judah (Yahuda). The word Jewish is a slang word for Judah (in Hebrew it is Yahudi).
      Spain was originally called IBERIA which mean “Land of the Hebrews” (the word Hebrew is Iber or Ibry in root Hebrew definition).

      Today Spain is also called Sepharad in Hebrew. See Sephardim or Sephardic Jew.

  40. CARLOS IZAGUIRRE -  December 25, 2011 - 3:53 pm

    Hi, I would like to know the origin of the last name Brevé. A friend once told me that it was written Brevette in French, but lately I’ve found that in Holland there are a lot of people with my last name, and through Elli’s Island manifest of people arriving to American there two brothers that arrived from Amsterdam to New York at the end of 1800′s.

    thanks for your time

  41. John -  December 5, 2011 - 8:52 am

    I would like to know the origin of the name Izzo and Loput and the meaning of each name.

    Of course many Italians have the last name Izzo, but some people are suggesting it may have older origins in Arabia. In fact there is a Saint in Morocco named St. Izzo.

    Could I get more information please?

  42. Beth -  November 27, 2011 - 10:29 am

    How many are so anxious to demonstrate their ignorance by correcting the master instead of learning what they can from the lesson.

    Where do you suppose Latin-languages and even English have derived their words? You split hairs over the issue of the spelling or root meaning of piedra, petra, and so on. You will NEVER grasp the complexities of surnames if your mind is so closed to how languages and names evolve. Pedro. Rock. Simple. I pity you.

    By the way, for our Biblical scholar friend, do you recall who Peter was? That GOD Almighty changed his name to Peter from… Wait for it… Simon!

    It’s better to keep your mouth shut sometimes and let people presume your ignorance than to open it and remove all doubt.

  43. Yaron Cortez -  November 22, 2011 - 4:44 am


    To understand the meaning of the suffic of “EZ” and “ES” of last names it first requires us to look back in history of Spain the Iberian Peninsula. We begin with the fact that the word for “Spain” (Iberia) in Hebrew is “Sepharad”. Sepharad or Sefer is where the word Sephardic comes from and means “the people of the Holy Book”. There are two major types today of what is called Jews in Judaism. One is the Ashkenazi Jew meaning German or Slavic speaking Jews and the other is Sephardic Jew or Spanish speaking or Spanish descent Jews.

    Spain the Iberian Peninsula was originally just called “IBERIA” and native people were called “Ibry’s” or Iberian’s. The Greeks said their native name was Ibry or Iber. Now the root word for Hebrew is “Ibriy” (developed from the old Hebrew words “EBER” and “ABAR”). Now EBER is the great grandson of SHEM, and SHEM is one of the three sons of NOAH. The word Shem or Sem is were we get the word Semitic and Anti-Semitic means hostile against the Hebrew people or in today’s meaning “anti-Jewish” or “hostile toward Jews”.

    The suffic EZ means “Eres Zion” or “of/or from Zion” or “from the land of Jerusalem, Israel”. The phrase “Of Zion” is a common phrase though out the Hebrew Bible. Thus the word ZIONISM that refers to the movement both spiritual and political in the modern State of Israel, which is controlled by the Ashkenazi Jews.

    So Iberia is one of the old names of modern Spain and means “the land of the Hebrew people” or “the Hebrew’s Land” and dates hundreds of years before the common era (BCE) of the Roman Empire/The Roman Catholic Church. Iberia’s root meaning also came from both the Ebro River and the Ebro Valley which is on the east side of Spain running north and south. Ebro means Hebrew also.

    The children of Israel which are Hebrew through Abraham and Israeli through Abraham’s grandson Israel (previously known as Jacob) have been called the “sons of Zion”, “daughters of Zion” and the “children of Zion” for thousands of years and throughout the Hebrew Bible. Now the Sephardic, Iberian, Hebrew, Hispanic or the descendants of Spain the Iberian Peninsula are root Hebrews before the Roman Empire and The Roman Catholic Church invaded and started the Spanish Inquisition and Earlier Inquisition.

    The Roman Catholic Church renamed it from Iberia to Ezpanna ( a Hebrew/Basque word meaning “the border or land of Yah (God)” and later changed it to Espania. Espania’s new meaning is possibly “the Land of Pan”. This is referring to the Greek mythical god Pan (or the goat man – the upper part is man and the lower part is a goat) who ruled the mountains and pastures. Today Pan is called the Devil or Satan. The word devil in Hebrew simply means “goat”.

    During the Inquisitions the land was plagued with torcher, killings and war, forcing all the native Hebrews to convert Catholic Christian or die. The blood shed was almost identical to a time in earlier history when Babylon wiped out the land of Yahudah (Judah the southern part of the original Israel). In the book of EIKHAH (LAMENTATION) 4:2, the prophet YermeYahuw (Jeremiah) is describing the horrors of war and destruction and then refers to the Hebrew people as “THE PRECIOUS SONS OF ZION”.

    Thus during the new horrors of war and destruction in Spain, the Spanish Hebrews added the suffix EZ meaning ERES ZION to the last names to identify their HEBREW roots for future reference. The meaning was not just “the son of” as writers tell us today, but the meaning was the “PRECIOUS SONS OF ZION”. The others who converted to the Catholic Christian religion also added a suffix to the last names and that was “ES”, which meant “EREZ SION” or “we are converso’s” or “we are of the new testament Catholic Church”. This was to avoid further inquisitions in the lives. Some hid under the disguise of pretending to be converted but was secretly keeping the Hebrew laws and teachings, these were called “Crypto Jews” meaning hidden Hebrews.

    Now the surname (last name) “PEREZ is an ancient Hebrew (now Hispanic) name which means “break forth from the womb”. Perez is one of Yahudah’s (Judah’s) twin sons. Here is the lineage of Abraham. Abraham’s son was Isaac (one of many sons), Isaac’s son was Israel (twin to Esau and previously known as Jacob), Israel’s 4th son was Judah (one of 12 sons-the 12 tribes of Israel, from 4 wives), and Judah’s son was Perez (also spelled Pharez/s and twin to Zarah). Perez today is an ancient Spanish name. In Hebrew the surname Perez is spelled Perets, the “ts” in Hebrew is translated as a “Z”, and pronounced “PEREZ”.

    So Sanchez means “the holy ones of Zion”, Rodriguez means “the power and wealth of Zion”, “Florez means the flower of Zion”, Mendez means “to mend or repair the breach or rebuild the old ways of Zion”, Cortez means “the court of Zion” or “the laws of God”.

    This is all part of a book that I have been researching and writing titled,
    “THE HEBREW HISPANIC HISTORY”. If you search you can find more of my writings for the past ten years on the internet. For more information or questions just contact me. I welcome all comments.

    May Yah bless you and help you on you quest for truth,

    Yaron Yahudah Cortez

    • Aharon -  July 8, 2014 - 2:59 pm

      Alot of what you’re saying is pure conjecture & bad linguistics. I see what you did there with the name Mendez & Cortez…that’s a bad methodology as those names don’t have the English word as the root & English didnt in that time didnt exist the way it does today. Perhaps your should get a degree in linguistics & learn something about historical interpretation before writing & misleading people with false & miscontrued information that may have some basis in truth & fact but deviates because of a poor methodology.

    • R. Cepeda Espinoza -  November 7, 2014 - 10:41 am

      Thank you for sharing results of your research! Interested in the history and meaning of these last names: Cepeda, Espinoza, Herrera, Montalvez, Delgado, Martínez. Await your reply.

    • Jose -  April 19, 2015 - 3:42 pm

      Don’t know what you read where…
      España comes from Hispania, a completely roman name as it is the way Romans called all the “península”.
      Iberia is because it is the land of the “Iberos”, the people with which the greeks had contact when they founded several cities there. The “iberos”, Iber, iberians, or however, where no jews at all. They where a very interesting people, with their own writing and a very developed culture and sculpture (though back from Greeks, of course), but very far from the Jewish culture. They were also great horseback riders and warriors. Julius Caesar allied them to spectacularly defeat Pompeius, for example. The Ibers where close to the Ber-Bers of northern Africa and talked almost the same language. These where no Jewish either.
      Around half Spain was Celtic and so is also called Celtiberia.
      About the ending EZ and Zion, never heard such a story. Though beautiful, it doesn’t match at all with the use of the ending -ez in the Spanish language, which is extensibly used with the root meaning of “quality of”, as you can check for example in any DRAE of the past hundreds of years. When used after a name, this “quality” refers to the “descendants of” someone.
      The Catholic church, the Roman or the Greek Gods, or Baal and the bull don’t have anything to do with all that history, as far as any historical source is taken into account.

    • Erik -  May 24, 2015 - 12:07 am

      Clouds of darker days eclipse the truth by this we are bound .

  44. Lopez -  November 10, 2011 - 5:10 am

    what about these last names…


  45. Ashley M -  September 19, 2011 - 1:12 pm

    What about Medrano?

  46. A7x -  July 28, 2011 - 7:28 am

    Can you find the meaning of “Cruz Estrada” I translated it into “Cross Roads” can you check it for me?

  47. Jonathan Durham-Santiago -  July 2, 2011 - 8:03 pm

    Could you look at Durham and Santiago for me?

  48. Carolyn Lively -  June 15, 2011 - 11:17 am

    how about Lively and Munoz?

  49. Maria Olaguez Chapa -  May 3, 2011 - 1:15 pm

    I would like to know where did the last name chapa originated and what does it mean. My dad was born in the state of Durango, Mexico.

  50. Martinez -  March 29, 2011 - 7:30 pm

    What does this name mean?

  51. SUAREZ -  March 26, 2011 - 6:10 pm

    what is my name meaning

  52. Hailey -  October 24, 2010 - 7:19 am

    I was wondering if the last name santerfeit was Latin, if not, what is it?

  53. Naya Van der Haans -  October 21, 2010 - 7:55 pm

    @mark v: in both Dutch and German, Van- means that the family was part of Prussian nobility in the 16 and 1700′s.

  54. Solange Escandón -  October 21, 2010 - 12:28 pm


    I wonder if you would know the origin(s) of my maiden name: Courteau.

    Thank you for your time.

  55. ms.karma -  October 12, 2010 - 2:26 am

    how about “de la” or “dela” in de la cruz, de la rosa, de la pena? “de” in de guzman?

  56. Why should you know -  October 11, 2010 - 7:06 pm

    Also, what about “Van” in Dutch names.

  57. Why should you know -  October 11, 2010 - 6:58 pm

    What about Tyma? It is shortened of something Russian and my grandma’s maiden name is Gonzowski. What does the “ski” or “sky” mean at the end?

  58. Ansel -  October 11, 2010 - 6:46 pm

    *Peterson would be son of PeteR! :p

  59. Ansel -  October 11, 2010 - 6:44 pm

    You, guys!
    It’s the same for every ez-ending name, so Martínez would be “Son of Martin” and Álvarez, “son of Alvaro”, just apply the annalogy to your EZ ending name! :)

    A for Wilson, Johnson, and almost every English name with the same ending, the suffix “son” litterally means “son”, hence Wilson would be “Son of Will”, Johnson “Son of John”, Peterson “Son of Pete” etc.

    Hope it helped! :) :)

  60. Gabriela -  October 11, 2010 - 6:13 pm

    I saw some of you ask what happen with surnames like “Santiago”. It’s because long time ago, when the people register begun, a lot of people hadn’t any surname, and when they went to register their children, they put their own names as a surname for the children. :)

  61. SD -  October 11, 2010 - 6:07 pm

    does anyone know about Torres? I know that generally it refers to “towers.” I have also been told several times from different people that names ending with -es or -ez are Sephardic, but blanketed with Spanish or other Latin influenced country/power. Any knowledge is much appreciated!

  62. Sammy -  October 11, 2010 - 6:02 pm

    What about the last name Eberts? What the heck is it supposed to mean? lol

  63. mo -  October 11, 2010 - 5:45 pm

    Jeanine: pronunciations shift over the centuries–we no longer pronounce the w in ‘sword’ or the gh in ‘thought’. English is a little lazy with its vowels, and so ‘coozan’ was slurred into ‘cuzzin.’ As much as it may distress French nationals and inconvenience Cousins, ‘cuzzin’ is taught as the proper English pronunciation because it IS, just as ‘thought’ is pronounced ‘thawt.’ ;)

  64. David E. -  October 11, 2010 - 5:06 pm


    Fuchs is German for “fox”.

  65. David E. -  October 11, 2010 - 5:05 pm


    Hillel is from the Hebrew root h-l-l, meaning “to praise”. This is also the root of the English “hallelujah”.

  66. Chris Rudolph -  October 11, 2010 - 4:30 pm

    Yes, just like the reindeer, but obviously no relation. lol Could you please tell me the origin of my last name and/or its meaning. I’m told I’m related to a king or something. It would be a good story for the day :)

  67. Amber -  October 11, 2010 - 4:26 pm

    I would be very interested to know the origin of the English surname Wareham.

  68. Nikki -  October 11, 2010 - 4:22 pm

    I know it’s German, but what about Fuchs?

  69. Mia -  October 11, 2010 - 3:59 pm

    What about Uzcategui? It’s from Spain. I want to know what it means

  70. Melissa Guzman -  October 11, 2010 - 3:50 pm

    Also, what about the last name: Martinez? Where does that come from?
    That’s my mother’s maiden name and it ends in a “ez” as well.

  71. Melissa Guzman -  October 11, 2010 - 3:48 pm

    My last name is Guzman. I am of Hispanic descent, but I know if the name is spelt with an “s” instead of a “z,” it is considered Jewish. Where does my name come from?

  72. Armando Teista -  October 11, 2010 - 1:46 pm

    tell me about my last name please “Teista” i have not been able to find much information on it. Thank you.

  73. Victoria -  October 11, 2010 - 1:21 pm

    What about the spanish last name Caro. It literally means expensive in spanish but what roots does it derive from?

  74. Jesse -  October 11, 2010 - 12:11 pm

    What about the Aleman? which translates to German. But where does it derive from?

  75. Agathe -  October 11, 2010 - 11:45 am

    My last name is Hillel, and my dad’s jewish. Where does it come from and where do the names Barczewski/ska and Karlbarczik come from?

  76. Jeanine Cousin -  October 11, 2010 - 11:08 am

    My Last name is Cousin, it is pronouced ” COOZAN “. I know its french and I have been told it refers to a cousin of male pursuation. What I want to know is why is the procounciation “taught” (in English) to be
    “cuzin”. Every time I meet someone new, I have to explain that it is not cousin, as in your relative. Can you help me out ?


    Jeanine Cousin

  77. jmz -  October 11, 2010 - 9:48 am

    I would like to know more about my last name “Zertuche”. I know my Parents, Grandparents, & Great Grandparents are from Mexico. I have found out by way of a newspaper article that this name orignated in Spain and spelled “Sertuche”. If you could enlighten me with more information that would be great.

    Also, “Castillon” which just from the spelling directs my thoughts to Spain as well. I believe from a region that I have heard as “Castillian” or near the country of Portuguese.


  78. Marc -  October 11, 2010 - 9:45 am

    What’s the origin of the surname Magellan? I know it an Anglicized version of the Portuguese name Magalhaes, but I’ve heard differing theories that Magalhaes was derived from either French or Irish roots. Thank you.

  79. Angelica -  October 11, 2010 - 9:44 am

    I would like to know what “Carrion” means and were dos it come from.

  80. Crystal -  October 11, 2010 - 9:39 am

    what about TORREBLANCA? I know it literally translates to white tower? But is that the origin or is there more to it???

  81. JH Diaz -  October 11, 2010 - 9:31 am

    Please share the origin of the names Diaz & Reyes – thanks!

  82. ann -  October 4, 2010 - 9:27 pm

    what about irog? in our native language it means love,.. i would like to know the origins of my surname..thank you!!

  83. The all american girl-next-door!!! -  October 1, 2010 - 7:08 am

    What aboutthe last name Yates? It was my great grandfathers name and it’s german.

  84. Sherri -  September 29, 2010 - 11:34 am

    the last name “Seldon”

  85. CeeCee -  September 29, 2010 - 10:45 am

    What about the last name Chapa, this name is not that common. At least that is what I see in my area. Almost anyone who is named Chapa has turned out to be related.

  86. Hillary -  September 27, 2010 - 9:12 pm

    How about the last name Derjanecz? I’ve managed to find some information about the French (Lemaire), British (Bellemy) and Irish (Melady) surnames in my family, but not Derjanecz, which is Hungarian.

  87. Anouk G -  September 27, 2010 - 10:47 am

    Alvarez: Son of Alvaro.
    Ramírez: Son of Ramiro.
    Jiménez: Son of Jimeno (the female form Jimena is more commonly used nowadays).
    Rodríguez: Son of Rodrigo.
    Cortez: Derived from the Spanish word Cortés, which means courteous or polite.
    Díaz: patronymic from the medieval personal name Didacus (also Diego).
    Benítez: Son of Benito.
    Sánchez: Son of Sancho.
    Juárez: Surname of galician origin. It could mean son of Juaro, but of that I’m not sure.

    Also, Spanish surnames with Hebrew or Jewish roots make perfect sense. Seeing as a great Jewish community lived in Spain during the Middle Ages, until they expulsion in 1492. This is where the Sephardic Jews originated from.


  88. David E. -  September 26, 2010 - 6:58 pm


    ‘imakh – with you (singular masculine and neuter)
    ‘imekha – with you (singular feminine)

    The other way around. My bad.

  89. David E. -  September 26, 2010 - 6:55 pm

    @liza (“How about Manuel?”):

    Manuel is from a shortening of Emmanuel or Immanuel.This is a Jewish name that comes from the Hebrew ‘imanū-ēl, meaning “God is with us”, from the word ‘im meaning “with” and the suffix -anū, -nū meaning “us, we, ours”. Forms of the root are:

    ‘imī – with me
    ‘imakh with you (singular masculine and neuter)
    ‘imekha – with you (singular feminine)
    ‘imakhem – with you (plural masculine and neuter)
    ‘imakhen – with you (plural feminine)
    ‘imō – with him; with it
    ‘imah – with her; with it
    ‘imanū – with us
    ‘imahem – with them (masculine and neuter)
    ‘imahen – with them (feminine)

  90. Mags -  September 26, 2010 - 5:05 pm

    OG- Pedro is a derivative of the Latin petrus, which means rock. piedra derives from petrus as well. Peter is the English version of Pedro. Therefore, Pedro does indeed mean rock. BTW, Peter’s original name was Simon, distinguished in the Bible as Simones Petrus, or Simon the Rock, later just commonly known as the rock, or Peter.

    • Daniel -  October 27, 2014 - 9:49 pm

      From what I know about the original passage of “upon this Rock I will build my church”
      Jesus was having a play of words

      ” and I tell you you are”Peter” (or small stone), and upon this Rock (great stone, referring to what Peter had just confessed, that Jesus is the Son of God, ) I will build my church. ”
      Of course Jesus is referenced as the rock of our salvation, the rock from which water flowed from in the desert aft error the Israelites left Egypt in their way to the promised land, etc…

      So Peter doesn’t mean rock, it means pebble or small stone. The difference is more obvious when translating from Spanish (Pedro = piedra or small stone, Roca means great rock or great stone)
      In essence, Jesús was telling the Pebble : you have found the Rock

    • Pablo -  May 23, 2015 - 10:54 pm

      Petrus cames from the Hebrew name Peretz ,which means the rock

  91. K. Deak -  September 26, 2010 - 12:24 pm

    What about Peter, rock of the Catholic Church — then to Perez?

  92. David E. -  September 26, 2010 - 10:27 am

    Is Eisner from the German Eisen, meaning “iron”?

  93. Maggie -  September 25, 2010 - 8:35 pm

    How about Joyce and Joyner? Thx.

  94. Amanda -  September 25, 2010 - 12:38 pm

    What about the surname of Jauregui (of Spanish origin)

  95. Ben -  September 25, 2010 - 9:07 am

    They left out the history of how the -EZ endings started. It goes back to when the Germans, not what we know as modern day Germany, but the Germans that invaded, conquered, and ruled Spain before the Romans invaded. I’m kind of surprised that they didn’t add this part in.

  96. sarah blake -  September 25, 2010 - 7:41 am

    I would like to know the origins of my surname – Arnold. Any ideas?

  97. Elle -  September 25, 2010 - 7:19 am

    Malohn – bet no one asks about this last name. My father’s family was pure German and maintain the name is German. I was told once it meant ” a little bit of money”. An Irish history teacher I had sweared it was a galec spelling of Malone, however I found no listing for this name in Ireland only in Germany. Also would love to know about Galvez (son of Gal?), the family is from Nicagaria? and San Salvador. Thanks, Elle

  98. Jennifer Dunn -  September 24, 2010 - 8:18 pm

    I am curious about Dunn and Kirejewski. Thanks!

  99. Daniel V -  September 24, 2010 - 6:35 pm


  100. LOVE -  September 24, 2010 - 3:58 pm

    Can you check out Angulo? Entire Family is of Mexican descent. Thanks so much!

  101. Nancy -  September 24, 2010 - 2:10 pm

    How about Seijas? and Santos?

  102. Kittrie -  September 24, 2010 - 12:26 pm

    Sometimes my first name is used as a last name and no one knows the origin of my first name can yo please define “Kittrie”

  103. Larry -  September 24, 2010 - 12:21 pm

    I guess it goes almost without saying, or without spelling in this case, but many names are derived from misspellings or phonetic spellings and corruptions of the original. Take the name Kavanaugh, for instance, but don’t take it in vain. More than 200 similar names all are derived from the Irish name “Caomhanach.” Among them are Cavanaugh, Kavanaugh, Cavana, Kavna, etc. It is also likely that when the Normans and Brits were oppressing the Irish for 650 years, they didn’t take great care about how names were spelled or pronounced, as long as they got the punctuation correct.

  104. Lorraine -  September 24, 2010 - 11:51 am

    Salgado was very rare when I was young, but now there are plenty. unfortunetly I know none. Please give me some significence of my Last name. Totally lost.

  105. Maria -  September 24, 2010 - 11:19 am

    What about the Spanish last name Estrada?

  106. Timothy -  September 24, 2010 - 10:59 am

    What about the last name Sewell?

  107. Susan -  September 24, 2010 - 10:24 am


    Are you able to find out anything about the name “Kasendi”. My grandfather changed his name from Klein to Kasendi in 1938. All I know is that it’s an Estonian name and loosley meaning birch grove.

  108. Dan -  September 24, 2010 - 10:18 am

    I’ve heard that people with Spanish last names that end in -EZ have Jewish roots. Does anyone have additional information?

  109. Julia Vera -  September 24, 2010 - 10:15 am

    Can you find out about a Mexican last name “Vera”? …the “V” is pronounced as a “b” in spanish.

  110. maria -  September 24, 2010 - 10:13 am

    Sanchez means “son of Sancho”, a very popular name in Spain .
    Remember Sancho Panza, from El Quijote?

  111. #1 Skillet fan -  September 24, 2010 - 10:13 am

    what about the last name “Flasher”? it was my great-great-great grandfather’s surname and I’m pretty sure he was either Irish or Scots-Irish. I’d love to have more information. Thanks

  112. Ernest Guerrero -  September 24, 2010 - 10:01 am

    I know that my surname means warrior, however, does it mean my ancestors were warriors or knights?

  113. Michelle -  September 24, 2010 - 9:57 am

    What about the last name Rudeau?

  114. Magan -  September 24, 2010 - 9:55 am

    How about these three:
    – Hunt
    – Ahlkvist and/or Alchivst
    – Klimkov

  115. Betty -  September 24, 2010 - 9:55 am

    What about: Terriquez? and the last name: Carlos?? Thanks =)

  116. henry membreno -  September 24, 2010 - 9:54 am

    My name membreno is rare. I do not know it’s origin. I’m from el salvador by may parents born in america. can you send info?

  117. Lisa -  September 24, 2010 - 9:49 am

    Surname: Freeze, probably Dutch; Fries. Can you help with this one?

  118. Mark -  September 24, 2010 - 9:27 am

    What about the surname Benavides?

  119. Mary Woerz -  September 24, 2010 - 9:26 am

    Or the meaning of my mothers maiden name Moers (German)

  120. Michaela -  September 24, 2010 - 9:25 am

    How about ‘Scilex’ or ‘Schreck’?

  121. Mary Woerz -  September 24, 2010 - 9:24 am

    Please give the meaning of my family name of Woerz (German)

  122. Jesus Manriquez -  September 24, 2010 - 9:23 am

    Actually I have a perfect name that requires some looking into. My last name ends with an -ez but I’m not sure where or how it came about, because I noticed I have never come across any other people with the same last name as this, “Manriquez” Thanks in advance =)

    • Jesus Manrriquez -  June 30, 2015 - 2:36 pm

      Hi. Our names are very similar. Where do you live? I’m in Houston.

      Jesus Manriquez – September 24, 2010 – 9:23 am

      Actually I have a perfect name that requires some looking into. My last name ends with an -ez but I’m not sure where or how it came about, because I noticed I have never come across any other people with the same last name as this, “Manriquez” Thanks in advance =)

  123. Rachel -  September 24, 2010 - 9:21 am

    I’d like to know the etymology of the surname “Dallaire.” I’m pretty sure it has French origins, and it’s quite popular in Canada.

  124. Octavio -  September 24, 2010 - 9:14 am

    What about the last name Díaz ? I have heard that it is of Hebrew origin. I would like to clarify that since my ancestry is from Spain.

  125. Ray -  September 24, 2010 - 9:13 am

    In regard to Nathan’s comment on September 23, 2010.

    Mexicans didn’t “come” to the US. Like most Americans, you (conveniently) forget that California, New Mexico and Texas were Mexican territory.

  126. j -  September 24, 2010 - 9:08 am

    I’d like to learn more about my maiden name, Bettencourt (which also has some variations in spelling). All I know is that it’s Portuguese. Thanks!

  127. mario adison -  September 24, 2010 - 8:57 am

    how about Adison or Addison? just wondrin…

  128. Yessenia -  September 24, 2010 - 8:53 am

    How about CORTEZ?

  129. HUETTE -  September 24, 2010 - 8:51 am

    Where does the name “HUETTE” come from?

  130. Anon -  September 24, 2010 - 8:47 am

    You forgot to address one of the most common -ez last names: Sanchez. This is reason I wanted to read the article and also the reason I was sorely disappointed after doing so.

  131. Kassy -  September 24, 2010 - 8:47 am

    What about the last name “Borrego”?
    Please and thank you! :D

  132. Aleecya -  September 24, 2010 - 8:30 am

    Please check Montanez, Gallegos, Rios, Arrellin

  133. robert bashinsky -  September 24, 2010 - 8:27 am

    The spelling of our name was changed by my great grandfather Leopold Max Bashinsky when he immigrated. The Polish spelling was Baczynski. I think he did this to cover his Polish Jewish roots. This is only conjecture on my part, however. Do you have any input on this name?

  134. Molly-lyn -  September 24, 2010 - 8:27 am

    I was at a family reunion a few years ago and my great uncle told my sister and I what are last name meant. I knew that DeHaan means The Cock(rooster) in Dutch, but I didn’t know why someone would name themselves after a rooster. Apparently I’m descended from Nederland chicken farmers?

  135. donnajhart -  September 24, 2010 - 8:27 am

    Nathan, I don’t buy into your premise that Mexicans or any other immigrants to the United States, did not know how to spell their surnames. History has documented that English-speaking staff at Ellis Island, stymied by foreign spellings, did not have the time or did not care enough to take the time to record accurate spellings. That sloppy approach led to new arrivals to our country leaving the island with new spellings of their names. Mr. Dmochowsky from Poland(dem-o-chow-skee) became Mr. Dmosky. Mrs. Durrer from Germany became Mrs. Durr.

    Many immigrants, entering the United States under stressful and intimidating circumstances, declined to correct the American processors. In addition, some immigrants believed they were required to adopt a more acceptable English version of their surnames.

    I will make an uneducated guess that more Mexican-Americans, not processed through Ellis Island and arriving in a more recent wave, have actually preserved their original surname spellings.

  136. Avonlea Fisher -  September 24, 2010 - 8:16 am

    Everyone always asks me “is your last name Fisher because you like to fish?” And I’ve only fished once in my lifetime, so obviously not.

    I’d like to know what Fisher really means :)

  137. Elizabeth -  September 24, 2010 - 8:08 am

    last name Lilas

    • Zil Lilas -  March 20, 2015 - 5:55 pm

      mine too. And have no clear idea where it came from.

  138. Rewey -  September 24, 2010 - 7:59 am

    Please elucidate Rewey.

  139. Ramon -  September 24, 2010 - 7:42 am

    How about “Guardiola”…?

  140. Bonnie -  September 24, 2010 - 7:39 am

    Please tell me about the last name of Null. I know its just nothing to you but with those with that last name, it’s quite a lot. Thanks.

  141. rafa -  September 24, 2010 - 7:28 am

    could you do something on basque last names?
    possibly uribe in there haha

  142. maria -  September 24, 2010 - 7:26 am

    My maiden name is Perez so I found this quite interesting! Of more interest is the fact that the name Perez appears on the first page of the new testament “Judah was the father of Perez and Zerah…” as Jesus’ lineage is described so to say that it has Hispanic origins is questionable and it seems more reasonable that Peretz is the variation of Perez and not the other way around. Furthermore, I’ve read that Peretz may have been a way for Jews to disguise their names and make them sound less Jewish during WWII.

  143. Jean Rodriguez -  September 24, 2010 - 7:26 am

    What about Rodriguez?
    I know my grandfather came from Spain.

  144. Anthony -  September 24, 2010 - 7:16 am

    Can you look up the name “CARABALLO” please?

  145. Vivian -  September 24, 2010 - 7:13 am

    My father’s last name was “Harris” and he was part Scot-Irish and Indian to my knowledge. My mother’s maiden name was “Voss” but her mother’s maiden name was “Giese”, with my Mom’s grandparents, her mother and herself being pure German. Can you expand a little on these names?

  146. isela -  September 24, 2010 - 7:11 am

    What about te last name martinez??
    and arredondo &almaguuer?

  147. Mary -  September 24, 2010 - 7:09 am

    What about the last name Leeger? I know that I have Scottish ancestory; could it be Scottish in origin?

  148. rence -  September 24, 2010 - 7:03 am

    how about dagongdong?

  149. Hoss -  September 24, 2010 - 6:54 am

    ‘Delgado means “thin” is Spanish.’ I think you mean Delgado means “thin” IN Spanish.

  150. Angelique -  September 24, 2010 - 6:48 am

    and Suarez?

  151. Sergio -  September 24, 2010 - 6:40 am

    What about Ramirez

  152. Brian -  September 24, 2010 - 6:40 am

    What’s the name “Fallas” originate from in Spanish?

  153. Claudia -  September 24, 2010 - 6:35 am

    My maiden name is IUS. I’d like to know the origin of that. I know it’s Latin and means law. It can also be spelled JUS (as the J and I are pronounced the same in Italian.

  154. jarleen -  September 24, 2010 - 6:34 am

    how about SAMBOY and PICHARDO?

  155. JB -  September 24, 2010 - 6:27 am

    what about this one….Arriaga?

  156. CrazyLineman777 -  September 24, 2010 - 6:24 am

    This is from personal experience of searching out my ancestors, but my last name: Duplantier means: “From the planters” in old French and my ancestors and their descendants still have vineyards and farms in northern France.

  157. Vee -  September 24, 2010 - 6:21 am

    Very interesting post. What about the last name Marcelo or Mercedez?

  158. Jean -  September 24, 2010 - 6:20 am

    Can you look up the surnames Williams, Lieberum, Donovan & Stark, please?
    And I love the flash cards. Thanks

  159. Sally Smith -  September 24, 2010 - 6:10 am

    Last name of DeColaines?? any help??

  160. Sofie Vanherle -  September 24, 2010 - 6:07 am

    Hello, in aswer to Mark’s request to explain names with Van, Van der, Vander, Van de etc…
    “Van” is indeed a Dutch word meaning “from” or “of”.
    “De” is the article “the”.
    My own name suggest that my ancestors came from a town called “Herle”. Vanbrussel meaning their ancestors were from Brussels etc…
    These names do not always include a city name. We also have names meaning “coming from the woods (Vandenbossche/Vandenbos/Van den Bos…), from the fields (Vandevelde), from the pastures (Vanderweyden, as in the painter Rogier Vanderweyden), from the chapel (Vandekapelle), from the garden (Vanthuyne), from the hedge (Vanderhaeghen), from the big house (Vangrootenhuyse), … the complete list would be very long.

    Names starting with “de” in small letters are usually names of the nobility. It is the same as “van”, but actually it’s french. Nobility spoke French even in the Dutch speaking part of Belgium. Some of them still do, because they think it’s “chique”.

    “De” with capital would be Dutch, and the equivalent of “the” in for instance Sir Galahad the Chaste. It could describe a quality, characteristic or maybe a resemblance.
    We have family names meaning “the frog” (Depuydt),”the cat” (Decadt), “the rooster” (Dehaene>>ex prime minister of Belgium) “the tall” (Degroote)”the short” (Decorte), “the long” (Delange), “the virgin” (Demaegdt), “the brown” (Debruyne), the white (De Witte),”the blacksmith” (Desmet), etc…
    I hope this helps a bit?

  161. Carson Elder -  September 24, 2010 - 6:05 am

    I would greatly appreciate it if you looked at “ELDER.” The most common explanation is that it was the term used to describe the oldest person in a village, but I don’t see how such a common term could become a Sir name I so rarely hear.

  162. Candace -  September 24, 2010 - 6:05 am


  163. Mardi (McAllister) Falcon -  September 24, 2010 - 6:04 am

    Is there a difference between the prefixes Mc- & Mac-, as in McAllister & MacAllister? I have read that European names were often based on the person’s occupation; so what exactly would an “allister” do??

  164. Heather Hough (Hoak) -  September 24, 2010 - 5:58 am

    My husband’s family name is ‘Hough’ pronunced ‘Hoak’. They originated in Germany, emigrated to England, then on to America and eventually to Canada at the time of the American Revolution. They have doggedly held on to the pronunciation through the centuries dispite all the confusion and need to habitually spell the name at reception desks.

  165. liza -  September 24, 2010 - 5:56 am

    How about Manuel?

  166. nancy bachlotte -  September 24, 2010 - 5:53 am

    how about the origns of bachelot,(french), thigpen, and holcom? thanks

  167. Virginia -  September 24, 2010 - 5:46 am

    What about Dominguez?

  168. Jo -  September 24, 2010 - 5:44 am

    I like your explanation, but in school they all said that most of the -ez last names were actually created after the 500 year war against the “moros” invasion in Spain, to identify the Moroccan families who had convert to Christianity. Now, is there any connection in there? And what about Martinez, Rodriguez, Dominguez and D’Cruze?

  169. Maisy MacBard -  September 24, 2010 - 5:31 am

    Likewise, with Scottish names the prefix Mc or Mac means “son of” or “descended from”. The same characteristic is seen with the Irish names beginning with O’.

  170. Suzan -  September 24, 2010 - 5:31 am

    I would love to learn more about the name Ritchin. Other than family members, I’ve never met another person with that surname. Every time I’ve traveled to a new city I always check the phone books but I’ve never come across “Ritchin”.
    Thank you so much.

  171. Alex -  September 24, 2010 - 5:29 am

    OK, i want to know what Ramirez means.

  172. Angeles -  September 24, 2010 - 5:28 am

    Can you please tell me what does “Prat” mean? That is the exact spelling. My family on both side are from Spain.

  173. Sarah Christ -  September 24, 2010 - 5:22 am

    I have a unique name that I’ve really never heard anyone else but Jesus to have, yep it’s CHRIST, what does that mean besides the obvious?

  174. Name? Doesn't matter -  September 24, 2010 - 5:14 am

    OMG!!!! I was just talking to my dad about our family name and it turns out he has a book with the names of some of the people who are related to us. Tony Blair is my 7th cousin, Bobby Bowden is my 15th cousin, there was a king in the 17th centry who is related to us and One of my cousins rode with Billy the kid. Whos real name is william wright.

  175. Name? Doesn't matter -  September 24, 2010 - 5:08 am

    Nevermind i just found it!!!! My mom last name means dirt!!!! Wow that’s messed up!!!! So if i had my moms last name my name would mean beloved pure dirt!!!!!!!!!!!!! Wow!!!!!! I’m glad it’s not!!!!!!!!!

  176. Name? Doesn't matter -  September 24, 2010 - 5:05 am

    You see I know the last name messer (which is my mothers last name) is from germany and my dads last name (which is also my last name) means “beauty/maker of bells” and it comes from Great Britain. So I would like to know what the last name messer means??? I would like to know cause my first name is french and it means Beloved and my middle name is Hebrew and it means Pure. And if you put those together it says beloved pure beauty/maker of bells and that sounds really weird to me. So if you could let me know that would be great!!! Thanks!!!

  177. Mauro -  September 24, 2010 - 4:51 am

    You are exactly right on the Spanish suffix ‘ez’; however, further, there is a geographic distinction between the suffix ‘ez’ and ‘es’. As you state correctly ‘ez’ is of Spanish origin while ‘es’ is of Portuguese origin.

    For example, ‘Moralez’ is of Spanish origin while ‘Morales’ is of Portuguese origin.

  178. Peter O'Connor -  September 24, 2010 - 4:49 am

    McGill and Magill – Both Mc and Ma come from mac – son off (Gaelic). Probably meant son off a Gaul ie Freench or possibly Welch person. As Bretons and Welsh were seen as being the same race – Celtics and not Gaelic (Irish). Ireland has almost no Celtic influence – is spite of what the Paddywhackery shops tell visitors. The Celtic status was invented (by a Welshman) during the reign of Victoria to give a feeling of family to the people of these islands.
    Just as O’ means off – son off. Ní is daughter used nowadays mostly if we Irish are using the Irish/Gaelic form of our names. eg My name is Peter O’Connor – Irish form Peadar Ó Conchubhair. My Sister Elizabeth is Éilish Ní Chonchubhair. Note the family name takes on a “sébhehe or h to denote female form”.
    BTW The tallest range of mountains in Ireland are the McGuillacuddy Reeks in Kerry. One of the nearest natural seaports is Bally na nGall – area of the Foreignness/Welsh.

  179. Name? Doesn't matter -  September 24, 2010 - 4:46 am

    What about the last name Messer, or Blair????

  180. Bob -  September 24, 2010 - 4:06 am

    Selena Gomez

  181. biswajit -  September 24, 2010 - 2:11 am

    what about “NAYAK” its indian surname..

  182. Kasi -  September 24, 2010 - 2:00 am

    @Nathan, you do know that most of the West Coast was once owned buy Mexico? Right? So that would mean Americans actually went to Mexico first.

  183. Tin -  September 24, 2010 - 1:45 am

    Wow, thanks for the heads-up! :) Interesting! How about Alvarez? :)

  184. Anónima -  September 24, 2010 - 1:36 am

    Pedro doesn’t mean “rock” in Spanish: the word for “rock” is “piedra”, or “roca”. Actually, the name Pedro shares origins with “Peter”, which (according to the Wikipedia), “is derived, via Latin “petra”, from the Greek word πετρος (petros) meaning “stone” or “rock”.

  185. jane -  September 24, 2010 - 1:31 am

    how about the surnames Belleza and Gervacio?

  186. Pat -  September 24, 2010 - 1:26 am

    Some comments from an Spanish native:

    - “Pedro” does not mean “rock”. They share similarities in their latin roots, though. “Perez” does not mean “son of Pero”, as “Pero” means nothing either: it means “son of Pedro”. BTW, “Petro” is not a Spanish name; it is Italian.

    - “Santiago” comes from “San Yago” (“San” means “Saint” in English). It is referred to the apostle.

    - “Nuñez” means “son of Nuño”, that is also a Spanish name (maybe old-fashioned, and not really used any more).

    - I do not agree with the idea that a Spanish name comes from an English or German name. All languages have been developed through history, and I think it is not fair to think that a language like Spanish is derivated from English or German… What is fair is to say that they both have indoerupean roots, although old hispanic languages were more influenced by Latin during the Roman empire.

    - Last, let me point that patronymic considerations are not only used to create Spanish surnames, but also English surnames (look at McDonald, for example). I guess, even with different languages, our antecesors shared the same traditions.

  187. MkMiku -  September 24, 2010 - 1:19 am

    Ah, good explanation for something that’s often overlooked!

  188. Jen -  September 24, 2010 - 1:19 am

    how about Catalfano?

  189. glenda -  September 24, 2010 - 1:08 am

    what about Rodriguez?

  190. Taylor -  September 24, 2010 - 12:57 am

    I would like to know more about the last name, Bartlett, if at all possible?

  191. Andres -  September 24, 2010 - 12:41 am

    how about Corona? And Fernandez? son of Fernando!?!?!

  192. Edwin -  September 24, 2010 - 12:28 am

    if you could look up ”Wikfors” please? from what i’ve been told it’s of swedish heritage, but i’ve never been able to find any origin on it.

  193. Cait -  September 24, 2010 - 12:07 am

    what about the surname “Litonjua?” :)

  194. K BenitEZ -  September 23, 2010 - 11:59 pm

    What about BenitEZ. Would it be like descendant of Benito? :P What would that mean?

  195. El Nunez -  September 23, 2010 - 11:54 pm

    BTW, Elsa was funny! “son of Ba?” lol! Then we Nuňez would been sons of Nuns?

  196. El Nunez -  September 23, 2010 - 11:52 pm

    Yes! What about Nuňez? Please, please, please give us info on Nuňez!

  197. Griffin -  September 23, 2010 - 11:38 pm

    Anything for the last name Ruehl? It’s also Ruhl and Rühle. I know it’s from north-western Germany but is there any significance or meaning to it?

  198. Carol -  September 23, 2010 - 11:27 pm


    I haven’t been able to decipher it yet. Maybe you can help a bit, haha? XD

  199. Kathleen -  September 23, 2010 - 11:21 pm

    Could you look up the origin or more information about the last name : Liceaga.


  200. Lexi -  September 23, 2010 - 11:08 pm

    @ Maria: Check out http://hotword.dictionary.com/last-name-ends-in-ez/. I think Juarez would fall into the geographical surname category.

    I’ve always wondered about my maiden name, Hartley. My guess is that my ancestors were hunters…

  201. Nishant Longani -  September 23, 2010 - 11:03 pm

    look for “Longani” please—-we had our origin in Swat Valley in present day Pakistan. We migrated to India in 1947!!

  202. Dean Terry -  September 23, 2010 - 10:39 pm

    How about the surname “Sackett”?

  203. Dean Terry -  September 23, 2010 - 10:38 pm

    Judy, I’m quite sure Nathan was kidding.

  204. Manuel -  September 23, 2010 - 10:31 pm

    Could you clarify Dominguez?
    I have an idea… but you could probably do a better job than me.

  205. reallyAnd.. -  September 23, 2010 - 10:29 pm

    What about such names in relation to animals?? I would like to think they are uncommon and have an interesting back round behind it, at the same time this could be a case of :write what they sound like” when speaking during transition at Ellis Island.. Names : Bear .. Eagles ..

  206. Jeff -  September 23, 2010 - 10:29 pm

    I’d like to know about the surnames Efird and Goodman please!

  207. Beverly :) -  September 23, 2010 - 9:40 pm

    ^^ And also what they mean :)

  208. Beverly :) -  September 23, 2010 - 9:39 pm

    I would really like to know where ‘Mariot’ and ‘de Maria’ come from :)

  209. Mr. Sarker -  September 23, 2010 - 8:44 pm

    i have a request. could you try to find out for me what the etymology of my last name is? thanks in advance!

  210. Lalo -  September 23, 2010 - 8:27 pm

    how about Jimenez?

  211. Tony -  September 23, 2010 - 8:14 pm

    What about Bermudez ?

  212. Nati -  September 23, 2010 - 6:36 pm

    Ramirez, por favor?

  213. kari -  September 23, 2010 - 6:29 pm

    what about the last name sanchez ??

  214. Carrie -  September 23, 2010 - 5:31 pm

    I know it is a place in England or was at some point but the surname Feltham, all I can find of it is some really old history not the meaning of it.

  215. Brenda -  September 23, 2010 - 5:23 pm

    My last name is Lara. I am first generation mexican american and I have noticed that my last name is not popular. I’ve only met one person with the same last name as me that wasn’t a relative. I would really like to know what it means.

  216. Faith -  September 23, 2010 - 5:08 pm

    OH yeah and my grandma’s maiden name was Hooker no joke :D

  217. Faith -  September 23, 2010 - 5:07 pm


  218. Hello7671 -  September 23, 2010 - 4:21 pm

    Can you please find the origins of the surname “Pluck”?

  219. paulina -  September 23, 2010 - 4:15 pm

    How about Rodriguez??

  220. lovejiyong -  September 23, 2010 - 3:46 pm

    What about the last name Seto? It’s from my dad side. I’m not sure if it’s Japanese but I’m not Japanese. Also can you see Chen? Thanks if you answer~!

  221. sbtokyo -  September 23, 2010 - 3:36 pm

    The Italian family name Ballati has been a mystery to me. The first part, Balla, can be associated with songs or poetry, such as in the English word ballad, as well as to dancing. Perhaps it harkens back to a man (or possibly a family line) that was identified as a balladeer, musician, dancer or raconteur.

    The name ending ~ati has been a greater mystery. It appears to be a plural form of ~ato in Italian, while it also seems to be a common ending for family names from India; could there be a link between Italy and India?

  222. Hydi -  September 23, 2010 - 3:27 pm

    How about the “ier” commonly tacked onto the end of French names?

  223. Sari -  September 23, 2010 - 3:07 pm

    Um…If were you guys I wouldn’t put my last name on this site….other people can read them which isn’t good…and I’m only in middle school and I know that

  224. og -  September 23, 2010 - 3:04 pm

    “Pedro” does not mean rock.”Piedra” means rock and it actually derives from the apostle Peter.

  225. NAME ADDRESS PEREZ GONZALEZ | BLOGCHI@mayopia.com -  September 23, 2010 - 1:35 pm

    [...] EZ ain’t that difficult — in fact it’s rather Easy. — The complication is some result of focus or lack of when reading Ken Kezey. — The Merry Pranksters had it down — doin the LOCO-MOTION — somewhere came the profit motive out of the Cuckoo’s Nest and the Pharmaceutical industry taketh all the money — and leave side effectSEZ the rest. — Is any of that funny?–>> Rupert L.T.Rhyme [...]

  226. Logan -  September 23, 2010 - 1:15 pm

    How about Balen? It is a Croatian last name from Sveti Rok,Lovinac, Croatia, and due to family history issues (the wars), we are unable to find out about it.

  227. Nathan -  September 23, 2010 - 1:07 pm

    Yes, Judy, I am well aware that was the case.

  228. mark V -  September 23, 2010 - 12:54 pm

    Nunez = Son of a nun?

  229. Corrie -  September 23, 2010 - 12:28 pm

    What about names that end in -ster or -xter, like Webster, Baxter, Dexter etc?

  230. tawsha -  September 23, 2010 - 11:42 am

    What about Creason?

  231. ana -  September 23, 2010 - 11:24 am

    hi¡ i’m spanish and my surname is martínez and idont know what really means
    someone wants to help?

  232. Jessica -  September 23, 2010 - 11:02 am

    What about Deras? I would love to know what it means.

  233. Ms. Safira Setareh Karbala'i -  September 23, 2010 - 10:58 am

    In proto-linguistics, HERNANDEZ H-ERNANDEZ is The-Ernandez.
    ERNANDEZ UR-NAN DISH is ancient Phyrexian for “Bowl of cheese,”
    therefore HERNANDEZ literally means “Bowl of cheese,” probably referring to the bowl of cheese eaten by Utnapishtim in The Epic of Gilgamesh.


  234. #1 Skillet fan -  September 23, 2010 - 10:57 am

    how about Kirby? sometimes its spelled “Kerby” because of the high percentage of illiteracy back in the late 1800′s and early 1900′s. Also how about “Colwell”?

  235. maria -  September 23, 2010 - 10:46 am

    what about Juarez?

  236. xDuffx -  September 23, 2010 - 10:25 am

    What about the last name “Nuňez?” What is its origin?

  237. Anna -  September 23, 2010 - 10:24 am

    My dad’s last name is ‘Dittman’, which is the Americanized of ‘Dittmar’, which is German. I would love more on either name! Or ‘Wilson’, which is my last name and one of the most common in the world.

  238. Vicki -  September 23, 2010 - 9:47 am

    I would love to know what family names mean: Vige, Jagneaux, Bertrand.

  239. Isabel -  September 23, 2010 - 9:46 am

    Is it on purpose that the Barack Obama link has no content?

  240. mark V -  September 23, 2010 - 9:45 am

    I know alot of “Van Der ____” or “Van ______” or “Vander ____”
    I know its Dutch, but what do the common prefixy bits do? Is there a difference the spaceing or capitalization adds? ((Van der, Van Der, Vander))

    Does “deVere” follow any similarities?

  241. Judy -  September 23, 2010 - 9:39 am

    Nathan, I am sure that the same could be said for plenty of immigrants coming in from just about any place in the world at almost any given time in American history. Plenty of names got changed at Ellis Island due to near-illiteracy, and often on the part of the US citizen working with the immigrants, not the immigrant him or herself.

    I am not sure what name would be changed to Johnson from Spanish as a best-guess in the world of phonetics. I’m thinking… not one?

  242. n/a -  September 23, 2010 - 9:38 am


  243. Ginette -  September 23, 2010 - 9:37 am

    I would like to know about Murguia, it’s an last name and the entire family is of Mexican roots

  244. Elsa -  September 23, 2010 - 9:36 am

    How about Baez? Son of Ba?

  245. C... -  September 23, 2010 - 9:35 am

    What about Martinez?

  246. kexan -  September 23, 2010 - 9:34 am

    What about the last name, ‘Galvan’ ????

  247. Nickle Magill -  September 23, 2010 - 9:33 am

    look at the last names McGill and Magill if you don’t mind?

  248. Nathan -  September 23, 2010 - 9:26 am

    I know that a long time ago when Mexicans first started to come to America and be a citizen, many people didn’t know how to spell their last names and changed it to their best guess. I think one example is Johnson, but I’m not one hundred percent sure.


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