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What's in a Name?

What's in a Name? Surnames, or our last names, are a unique story handed down for hundreds of years throughout your family.

You usually get your surname from your father, however today, many kids have more then one surname, or a combination surname of their father and mother.

The story of your surname can often lead to you to find some very interesting facts about your ancestors, where they came from and what they may have done.

Many countries and cultures have different naming patterns and practices. Surnames also often get changed over time. This can be caused from misspelling of a name by the sound of it.

Some surnames were first derived from a man's occupation. Carpenter, Taylor, Brewer, Mason are examples of this. This was commonplace at the end of the 14th century.

Some surnames refered to place names and reflected a location of residence. Hill, Brook, Forrest, and Dale are examples of this.

Some surnames came about by an easily distinguished trait, or by some physical characteristic. A good example of this is Short.

If you have a fairly common last name it should be easy to find the information. Unfortunately, my birth name, Sherratt, didn't come up with any information -- I'll have to dig a little deeper.

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