List of family name Suffixes

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Author:Laxman Burdak, IFS (Retd.), Jaipur

Family name Suffixes are a clue for family name etymology and can sometimes determine the ethnic origin of a person. This is a partial list of Suffixes.

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A

  • -a (typically in female names, in most European languages, except French)
  • -a- (Frisian) "One of the good guys", could be -ma, -stra, -ta. Frisians took the oath of the Free Frisians screaming 'Better dead than a slave' after which they could get their new surnames (see Eala Frya Fresena).
  • -ac (Serbian, Croatian, Slovenian, Southern French)
  • -acz (Polish)
  • -aei (Persian) (See -i) for words that end in the long vowel A
  • -aitis (Lithuanian) "son of"
  • -aitė (Lithuanian) signifies an unmarried female
  • -aty Americanized form
  • -aj (Albanian) “he, him" Last name denotes first name of direct ancestor. Descendants of a man named Prenk, would be given last name Prenkaj, meaning he is from Prenk. Generally the last name removing the “aj” suffix is the name of the originator of the family before last names were used dating 300 years back or older.
  • -ak (Belarusian, Croatian, Polish, Slovak, Slovenian, Ukrainian) See -ák for its Slovak meaning.[1]
  • -ák (Czech, Slovak) In Slovak, -ák means "pertaining to" or merely creates a noun, and its two other versions are -iak and -ak.
  • -an (Romanian)
  • -and (French)
  • -ange (French) from Germanic -ing
  • -anu (Romanian)
  • -ár (Slovak)
  • -ář (Czech)
  • -ard (French) from Germanic -hard, sometimes pejorative
  • -arz (Polish)
  • -as (Greek, /male/ Lithuanian)
  • -au (Belarusian) equivalent to Russian -ov
  • -aud, -au(l)t (French) from Germanic -(w)ald, sometimes pejorative
  • -auskas (Lithuanian for the Polish -owski, Belarusian -auski)
  • -awan (Urdu)

B

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  • -ba (Abkhazian) "male"
  • -bach, -back (German) "brook, stream"
  • -bäck (Swedish) "brook"
  • -backa, -backe (Swedish) "hill", "slope"
  • -baum (German) "tree"
  • -beck (Swedish) "brook" (archaic spelling)
  • -bee, -by (English) "homestead"
  • -berg (German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish) "mountain" or "hill"
  • -bergen (Dutch) "mountain" or "hill"
  • -bert (French, German) from Germanic -berht “bright”
  • -bois (French) ″wood″
  • -bos(c) / -boc (Northern French) ″wood″
  • -borough (English)
  • -bourg (French) "town"
  • -brook (English)
  • -brun, -brunn (German, Swedish) "spring"
  • -burg (German, Scottish)
  • -burn, -burne (English) "brook"
  • -by (Danish, Norwegian, Swedish) "town", "village"; also borrowed into English

C

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D

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  • -dal (Danish, Norwegian, Swedish) "valley"
  • -dale (English) "valley"
  • -dalle (Norman-French) "valley"
  • -datter (Danish, Norwegian) "daughter (of)"
  • -din (Swedish)
  • -don (English) "hill"
  • -dun (French) "fortress"
  • -dorf (German) "village"
  • -dotter (Swedish) "daughter (of)"
  • -dóttir (Icelandic) "daughter (of)" patronymic suffix (by law)]] of not a family name but part of the Icelandic last name where (usually) the father's name is always slightly modified and then dóttir added)
  • -udóttir (Icelandic) "daughter (of)" (u would always mean that the dóttir-suffix is a matronymic Icelandic suffix (except for Sturludóttir) and female matronimyc last names are almost always of this form)
  • -dze (Georgian) "son of"
  • -dzki (Polish) variant of -ski, -cki

E

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  • -eanu (Romanian)
  • -eau, -eault (French) diminutive suffix (Latin -ellu-)
  • -ec (Czech, Slovak, Croatian, Slovenian, Polish, Ukrainian, Belarusian), (French spelling for Breton -e.g.)
  • -ee (See -i)
  • -eff (Russian, Bulgarian) obsolete, copied from German transliteration of -ev
  • -eiro (Portuguese, Galician)
  • -ek (Czech, Polish, Slovak, Slovenian, Croatian) diminutive
  • -ell (English spelling for French -el, diminutive)
  • -el (Northern French and Occitan, French -eau)
  • -ema (Suffix of Frisian origin, given by Napoleon Bonapart who used suffixes like these to keep a record of people's origins within Holland)
  • -ems (Dutch)
  • -ėnas (Lithuanian) "son of"
  • -enko (Ukrainian), -enka (Belarusian) "son of"
  • -chenko (Ukrainian), -chenka (Belarusian)
  • -ens (Dutch)
  • -ent (French)
  • -er (English, French, German, Turkish "male")
  • -ers (Dutch)
  • -es (Greek, Portuguese) "son of" in Portuguese
  • -escu (Romanian) "son of"
  • -eşti (Romanian) possessive plural, also used in place names
  • -et (French) (diminutive suffix Latin -ettu- or former -el)
  • -eu (Belarusian) equivalent to Russian -ev
  • -ev (Russian (all nationalities of Russia), Bulgarian, Macedonian) possessive
  • -eva (Russian (all nationalities of Russia), Bulgarian, Macedonian) Feminine equivalent of -ev
  • -evski (Macedonian, Bulgarian) possessive
  • -evska (Macedonian, Bulgarian) Feminine equivalent of evski
  • -ez (Spanish, North Picard) including Spanish-speaking countries "son of"; in Picard, old spelling for -et
  • -ëz (Albanian) for feminine; a word refer to something smaller, either literally or figuratively as in a form of endearment
  • -fält, -fäldt (Swedish) "field"

F

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  • -fia, -fi, -fy, -ffy (Hungarian) "descendant of" (literally "son of")
  • -felt, -feldt (Swedish) "field" (archaic spelling)
  • -ford (English)
  • -fors (Swedish, Danish, Norwegian) "rapids"
  • -fort (French)

G

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  • -gil, (Turkish, "family")(e.g Korkmazgil)
  • -gaard, -gard, -gård (Norwegian, Danish, Swedish, French) "farm" (garden in Northern French)
  • -garth (English, Scottish) "orchard"
  • -gate (English)
  • -gren (Swedish, Danish, Norwegian) "branch"

H

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  • -haar (German, Danish) "hair"
  • -han (Turkish) "king, khan"
  • -holm (Swedish, Danish, Norwegian) "island"
  • -höven, -hoeven (German) "small garden"

I

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  • -i (Italian) in most surnames, plural
  • -i (Hungarian) "of", "from" (geographically)
  • -i (Arabic, Persian) "descendant of", "attributed to" (e.g. "Baghdadi", "Abbasi")
  • -ia (Abkhaz, Mingrelian)
  • -ian(ts), -yan(ts), -jian, -,gian, -ents, -ants, -unts, -uni (Armenian) "son/daughter of"
  • -iak (Ukrainian, Polish) "descendant of". In Slovak, -iak is a version of -ák/-ak and means "pertaining to" or merely creates a noun.
  • -ici Romanian of Serbian origin (Romanian adaptation of -)
  • -ic(k) (French), misspelling for Breton -ig, diminutive
  • -ich (Belarusian), -ych (Ukrainian) "son of"
  • -ovich (Belarusian), -ovych (Ukrainian)
  • -evich (Belarusian), -evych (Ukrainian)
  • -icz (Polish) "son of"
  • -owicz (Polish), -owic (Polish)
  • -ewicz (Polish), -ewic (Polish)
  • - (Serbian, Croatian, Bosnian) [diminutive]
  • -ović (Serbian, Croatian, Bosnian) diminutive possessive, little son of
  • -ević (Serbian, Croatian, Bosnian) diminutive possessive, little son of
  • -begović (Bosniak) diminutive possessive of a beg, i.e. chieftain's or chief's little son
  • - (Slovenian, Slovak, Czech (rarely)) diminutive, "son of"
  • -ovič (Slovenian, Slovak, Czech (rarely)), -ovic (Slovak, Czech (rarely))
  • -ičius (Lithuanian) actually Lithuanianized version of the Belarusian -ich and Polish -icz
  • -avičius (Lithuanian) actually Lithuanianized version of the Belarusian -ovich and Polish -owicz
  • -evičius (Lithuanian) actually Lithuanianized version of the Belarusian -evich and Polish -ewicz
  • -ičs (Latvian) actually Latvianized version of the Belarusian -ich and Polish -icz
  • -ovičs (Latvian) actually Latvianized version of the Belarusian -ovich and Polish -owicz
  • -evičs (Latvian) actually Latvianized version of the Belarusian -evich and Polish -ewicz
  • -ides, idas (Greek), "son of"
  • -ier (French)
  • -ik (Belarusian, Croatian, Czech, Polish, Slovak, Slovenian) It merely creates a noun in Slovak where -ik is a version of -ík, can be endearment, diminutive, have other meanings.[2]
  • -ik (Estonian) if it follows a tree name, has a meaning "grove"
  • -ík (Slovak) It merely creates a noun and can also be endearment, diminutive, have other meanings; its other Slovak version is -ik.
  • -ikh, -ykh (Russian)
  • -in (Russian (all nationalities of Russia), Belarusian, Ukrainian, Bulgarian) possessive
  • -ina (female equivalent of -in; especially rare for male names, but the suffix alone is an actual female name)
  • -in (French) diminutive
  • -ing (Anglo-Saxon, German) "place of the people of"
  • -ino (a common suffix for male Latino and Italian names)
  • -ipa (Abkhazian) "son of"
  • -ipha (Abkhazian) "girl of"
  • -is (Greek, /male/ Lithuanian)
  • -ienė (Lithuanian) female version
  • -ytė (Lithuanian) unmarried female version
  • -ishin (Ukrainian) possessive (e.g. Romanishin = son of wife of Roman)
  • -ishina (female equivalent of -ishin)
  • -iu (Romanian)
  • -ius (Lithuanian) "son of"
  • -iv (Ukrainian) possessive

J

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  • -j (Adygean)"old"

K

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  • -ka (Belarusian, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Sanskrit) diminutive. According to Panini it is used to denote : : (i) Depreciation. [ Kutsite, Panini, V. 3.75, e.g. Puranaka, name of a servant.] (ii) Endearment. [Sanskrit-English Dictionary by Monier Williams p. 338, col. 3. ]
  • -kan, -ken (Turkish) (e.g. Vuruşkan)
  • -kawa, -gawa 川 (Japanese) "river"
  • -ke, (German)
  • -kin, -kins, -ken (English) "little"
  • -kin (Dutch) "little"
  • -ko (Ukrainian, Polish, Slovak, Czech) diminutive
  • -ko (Adygean) "son" ĸъо
  • -kus (Lithuanian)
  • -kvist (Swedish) "twig"
  • -kyzy (Kyrgyz) "daughter of"

L

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  • -la, - (Finnish), comes to surnames from names of villages and farms
  • -ła, -la (Polish), often comes from verbs in the past tense; in countries where the letter Ł is not available, it is replaced by L
  • -lay, -ley, -ly (Scottish, English, Irish) "wood," or "grove"
  • -le, -lein (German) "small"
  • -li, -, -lu, - (Turkish, Azeri) "from" (e.g. İzmirli, Ankaralı, İstanbullu, Bakülü)
  • -li (Italian)
  • -lin (French, Irish, Swedish) in Germanic names "small"
  • -litz (German)
  • -lund (Swedish, Danish, Norwegian) "grove"

M

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  • -maa (Estonian) "land"
  • -mägi (Estonian) "hill"
  • -mäe (Estonian) "hill"
  • -man (English, German, Swedish) "manly or heroic", "male person", "servant of," (Turkish) "male person"
  • -man (Indonesian) a common suffix, usually denotes a male (e.g. "Budiman")
  • -mann (German) "manly or heroic", "male person", "servant of"
  • -mand (Persian, مند-) owning or showing
  • -maz (Turkish) "does not" (e.g. "Yılmaz = Yields not", "Korkmaz = Fears not")
  • -men, -man (Turkish) flipping suffix (e.g. ak=white, akman=purely white), "person", "male person", have other meanings
  • -ment (French) from Germanic “man”
  • -mets (Estonian) "forest"
  • -mont, -mond (French) "mountain" or "hill", or from Germanic -mund "god"

N

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  • -, -te /female/ (Lithuanian)
  • -nen (Finnish) [diminutive], "from"
  • -nik (Estonian) attributed to occupation (talu being "farm" - talunik being "farmer")
  • -nova, -novas (Italian, Galician, Catalan) "new"
  • -novo (Galician) "new"
  • - (Czech, Slovak) adjective
  • -ny (Polish) adjective
  • -nezhad, -nejad (Persian, نژاد) "descendant of"
  • -nyi (Hungarian)

O

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  • -o (typically in male names in most European languages except English, French, etc.)
  • -off (Russian, Bulgarian) obsolete, copied from German transliteration of -ov
  • -oğlu (Azeri, Turkish) "son of" (e.g. Türkoğlu)
  • -ok (Belarusian, Ukrainian, Czech)
  • -ois, -oy, -ais, -ay (French) from Germanic -isk and Vulgar Latin -ese
  • -on (French), former subject case in masculine names
  • -onis (Lithuanian) "son of"
  • -os (Greek, Gasconic, Spanish, Portuguese) from Latin -us
  • -opoulos, -opulos (Greek)
  • -osz, - (Polish, Czech, Slovak)
  • -ot (French) "little"
  • -ots (Estonian) "end/edge"
  • -ou(t) (French), various origins
  • -ou (Greek)
  • -ou (Belarusian) equivalent to Russian -ov
  • -ouf (French), Norman French spelling of Old Norse ulfr and Germanic wulf “wolf”
  • -ouf (French), French spelling of North African names
  • -oui (French), French spelling of North African names, English spelling -wi
  • -ous
  • -ov (Russian (all nationalities of Russia), Bulgarian, Macedonian) possessive
  • -ova (Russian (all nationalities of Russia), Bulgarian, Macedonian) Feminine equivalent of -ov
  • -ová (Czech, Slovak) suffix attached to most Czech and Slovak female surnames
  • -ovski (Macedonian, Bulgarian) possessive
  • -ovska (Macedonian, Bulgarian) Feminine equivalent of -ovski
  • -ow (Prussian, though found in predominantly German names, it is pronounced like English "ow" not like the German "ov")

P

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  • -pern, -perin (German) "spring"
  • -pour, -poor (Persian) "son of"
  • -putra (Indonesian) "son"
  • -putri (Indonesian) "daughter"
  • -puu (Estonian) "tree"

Q

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  • -quetil (Norman-French) from Old Norse ketil “cauldron”
  • -quin, (French) from Dutch -kin "little"
  • -quist, -qvist (Swedish) "twig" (archaic spelling)

R

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  • -ridge, -redge, -rigg (English)
  • -rud (Norwegian) "clearing"

S

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  • -s /male/ (Latvian)
  • -s /male/ (Lithuanian)
  • -s /male/ (French), former subject case (from Latin -us)
  • -s (Dutch, Irish) "(son/daughter) of". Sometimes less recognizable, like in "Hendrickx" (son/daughter of Hendrik)
  • -saar (Estonian) "island"
  • -salu (Estonian) "grove"
  • -schmidt, -schmitt, -schmid, -schmit (German) "smith"
  • -sen or zen (Danish, Norwegian, Dutch or Low German) "son (of)"
  • -ssen (Dutch or Low German) "son (of)"
  • -ssens or -sens (Dutch) "grandson/granddaughter of". Literally "(son/daughter) of the son of"
  • -sepp (Estonian) "smith"
  • -shvili (Georgian) "child"
  • -skas (Lithuanian) actually Lithuanianized version of the Polish and Belarusian -ski
  • -ski (Polish, Belarusian, Macedonian, Bulgarian, Sorbian. Also Russian but more often transliterated as -sky), "originating from", "estate of"
  • -ska (Polish, Belarusian, Ukrainian, Macedonian, Bulgarian, Sorbian) Feminine equivalent of -ski
  • -skiy, -skyi (Ukrainian)
  • -sky (Russian)
  • -skaya (Russian) Feminine equivalent of -sky
  • -ský (Czech, Slovak)
  • -ská (Czech, Slovak) Feminine equivalent of -ský
  • -skis (Latvian) actually Latvianized version of the Polish and Belarusian -ski
  • -sma (Frisian) "son of"
  • -smith (English)
  • -son (English, Swedish, German, Norwegian, Icelandic) "son (of)" (in Iceland not part of a family name but the patronymic (sometimes matronymic) last name (by law), where (usually) the fathers's name is always slightly modified and then son added)
  • -sson (Swedish, Icelandic) "son (of)" (in Iceland technically the first s is a separate "suffix" of the father's name according to Icelandic language rules, one of the most common modifications)
  • -uson (Icelandic) "son (of)" (u would always mean that the son-suffix is a matronymic Icelandic suffix (except for Sturluson or foreign family name Ferguson) and male matronimyc last names are almost always of this form)
  • -(s)son (French), diminutive
  • -stad (Norwegian, Swedish, Danish) "town, place"
  • -stein (German) "stone"
  • -sten (Norwegian, Swedish, Danish) "stone"
  • -stern (German) "star"
  • -ström (Swedish), -strøm (Danish, Norwegian) "stream"
  • -svärd (Swedish) "sword"

T

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  • - (Ossetian) "belong to"
  • -tabar (Persian) "descendant of"
  • -thwait (Anglicized from the Old Danish thveit) "meadow, clearing" introduced into British Isles by Vikings between 800 and 1066 AD
  • -to, -, -do, - 藤 (Japanese) "wisteria"
  • -toft (English) "knoll"
  • -ton, -ten, -tone (English) "town," "place" or "village"
  • -tuit (Norman-French from Old Danish thveit)
  • -tzki, -tzky (Polish) - phonetic Germanized spelling of original Polish -cki
  • -Türk (Turkish) Although commonly used in surnames -Türk is not a trully suffix. Surnames ending with -Türk are hybrid surnames. (eg. Ertürk= er + türk)

U

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V

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  • -velt (Dutch) "farm" or "field"
  • -verde (Spanish) "green"
  • -vich (Belarusian, occasionally a respelling of original Serbian, Croatian -vić) "son of"
  • -vych (Ukrainian)

W

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  • -wicz (Polish), -wic (Polish)
  • -vić (Serbian, Croatian, Bosnian)
  • -vič (Slovenian, Slovak, Czech (rarely)), -vic (Slovak, Czech (rarely))
    • -vici (Romanianized respellings)
  • -vics (Hungarianized respellings)
  • -vitz, -witz, -witch, -witsch (Germanized or Anglicized respellings)
  • -vičius (Lithuanian) actually Lithuanianized version of the Belarusian -vich and Polish -wicz
  • -vičiutė (Lithuanian) signifies an unmarried female
  • -vičs (Latvian) actually Latvianized version of the Belarusian -vich and Polish -wicz
  • -vili (Georgian)
  • -ville (French) "farm", "village", "town"
  • -wala (Indian) denotes the occupation or place of Origin (Occupation example: Batliwala - one who deals with bottles. Place example: Suratwala - one from Surat)
  • -wan (Indonesian) denotes a male name
  • -wati (Indonesian) denotes a female name
  • -well (English)
  • -white, -waite (English) "clearing"
  • -wi (Arabic) "from"
  • -wood (English)
  • -worth (English) "homestead"
  • -wright (English) "maker of"

X

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  • -y (See -i)
  • -ycz (Polish)
  • -yk (Polish)
  • -ynas (Lithuanian) "son of"
  • -ysz (Polish)

Z

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Note: Since Azeri the Azerbaijan Turkish is a dialect of Turkish all the suffixes in Istanbul Turkish is used in Azerbaijan and vice versa.

See also

References

  1. http://www.pitt.edu/~votruba/qsonhist/slovaklastnamesfromfirstnames.html
  2. http://www.pitt.edu/~votruba/qsonhist/slovaklastnamesdiminutives.html#diminutives

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