Top 80 Welsh Last Names Or Surnames With Meanings

Top 80 Welsh Last Names Or Surnames

Most Welsh last names are patronymic, and the surnames, especially those from the middle ages, have prefixes like ap and ab, which mean “son of”, and ferch, which means “daughter of”. Other names were derived from nicknames, occupations, and some were also non-hereditary personal names. Let’s take a look at some popular Welsh surnames.

80 Popular Welsh Surnames or Family Names With Meanings

Welsh family names make for some great first names. With their origin and history, you could pick one of these rare names that will stick on:

1. Adam

A common biblical surname, it means “son of Adam”. The popular Welsh version of this name is Adda and Bathoe.

2. Ajax

A rare Welsh surnames, it seems to belong to only one family found in only one part of Cardiganshire.

3. Anwyl

Derived from the Welsh word annwy, which means “beloved”, “dear” or “favourite child”.

4. Astley

Derived from an English place name it is adopted by the Welsh. It means “eastern woodland clearing” in Old English.

5. Awbrey

One of the Old Welsh surnames, it arrived after the Normans went on to conquest the Wales region. The person who originally bore this name was supposed to live in a place planted with elder trees.

6. Bach

Commonly used as a nickname for a short or small man, it traces its origin to the Welsh word, bach that means “little”.

7. Beavin

It is a patronymic name that is created from the Welsh name Bevan, derived from ab Lefan or ap Lefan.  The prefix ap or ab means “son of” and therefore the name means “son of Lefan”.

8. Beddoe

Derived from the personal name Bedo, which is a short form of Meredydd. It means “sea lord”.

9. Benbow

Adopted from the English name Bendbow, this name moved to Wales from the midlands. It was originally given to an archer.

10. Bennion

The name is an English version of the Welsh name ap Einion, which means “son of Enion”.

11. Balyney

The name is given to someone who lived in the upland.

12. Cadwalader

A variant of the name Calwallader, it means “leader of the battle”. It is derived from the Welsh words cad, which means “battle” and gwaladr, which means “leader”.

13. Cardiff

It is a toponymical name for someone from the Welsh capital city of Cardiff. The name Cardiff is itself derived from a combination of two Welsh words caer, meaning “fort”, and taf, which means “stream of water”.

14. Carew

The name comes from Welsh care, which means “fort”.

15. Cecil

Derived from the old Welsh name Seisyllt, it is actually a different form of the Latin name Sextilius, which comes from the Latin word sextus. It means “sixth”.

16. Clocker

It is a Cornish surname that came to Wales with the mining families that migrated before 1800.

17. Dacus

This name is an English or anglicized version of the Welsh personal name Deicws. It is also a pet or short form of “Dafydd”, the Welsh form of “David”.

18. Dee

Dee is derived from the Welsh word Du which means “dark”.

19. Deiniol

A Welsh variant of Daniel, this biblical name means “God is my judge”.

20. Devonald

It is derived from the Welsh surnames Devenallt and Dyfnallt. It means “deep hill”.

21. Edris

A variant of the personal name made of two Welsh elements uud menaing “lord” and ris that means “impulsive” or “ardent”.

22. Elijah

A name with a Hebrew origin, it means “God of the Lord” or “the strong Lord”.

23. Eynon

Derived from the Welsh word Einion/Einon, it means “the son of Eignion”.

24. Felix

This name originates from the Latin word that means “lucky” and also the name of a saint.

25. Flint

It is a toponymical name for someone from the place called Flint in Wales based in Flintshire, famous for the Flint castle.

26. Floyd

A variant of the surname Lloyd, it is derived from the Welsh word llwyd that means “gray”. The name could have a reference to a young man.

27. Gadarn

The name is derived from the forest deity “Hu Gadarn”.

28. Games

A Welsh surname derived from the Welsh words gam or cam, which means “crooked” or “bent”.

29. Geonor

An occupational name for the one who built walls and medieval machines. It also means “engineer”.

30. Goff

It is a variant of the English name Gough that comes from the Welsh word coch, which means “red”. Again it could be a nickname for someone with red hair or a reddish complexion.

31. Griffiths

Meaning “Son of Gruffud”, this name comes from the old Welsh name Griphuid, which means “chief” or “Lord”.

32. Gynne

This name is derived from the Welsh word Gwyn, which means “blessed”.

33. Hier

Heir could be derived from Hir, which in Welsh means “long” or “tall”.

34. Hopkins

This is an English surname adopted in Wales and derived from Hob. In English, it means “son of Hob”.

35. Hughes

A popular English name, its Welsh variant is Howells.  It means “Son of Howell”and could also trace its origin to Hugh from the Old Germanic word hug, which means “heart” or “spirit”.

36. Idle

A derivative of the Welsh personal name Ithael, it originates from the Old Welsh name ludhail, which means “bountiful Lord”. Another variant of this name is Ithell.

37. Issac

It’s a biblical name that came to Wales after the reformation. In Hebrew, it means “he will laugh”.

38. Jacob

This biblical name came to Wales with the Reformation. It means “to be behind” or “to follow” in Hebrew.

39. Jenkins

It means “son of Jenkin”. The name is derived from the name “John” with the suffix kin added to it. It could mean “relating to John’s family”.

40. Jervis

Derived from Gervaise, the name could be a Norman personal name Jarvis.

41. Kemble

Derived from the old Welsh personal name Cynbel, it is a composition of Old Welsh elements cyn, which means “chief”, and bel, which means “war”.

42. Kendrick

Derived from the medieval Welsh personal name Cynwrig, meaning “greatest champion”.

43. Kneath

A toponymical name derived from Neath, which is also the name of several places and a river in Wales.

44. Kyffin

This name is derived from the Welsh word cyffin, meaning “border”.

45. Landeg

It is a short form of the word glandeg, and it means “handsome”.

46. Llewelyn

The name is an ancient Welsh personal name and also a popular name for the medieval princes. It is also believed to have been derived from Lugobelinus and Cunobelins. Some believe it to be derived from the Welsh word llyw, meaning “leader”.

47. Leyshon

Derived from the Welsh personal name Lleision or Ley, it means “lion-like”.

48. Mabe

It is derived from the Welsh word mab, which means “son”.

49. Maddocks

It is derived from the Welsh personal name Madoc, which comes from the Welsh word mad that means “good” or “fortunate”. Other variants include – Mattock, Maddox and Madog.

50. Merrick

The name is a Welsh form of Maurice and originates from the Welsh name Meurig. The name, Maurice, comes from the Late Roman name Maurus that means “dark-skinned”.

51. Mills

An English name, it means “someone who lives by the mill”. Welsh variants include Mille and Mylle.

52. Nanney

It is a habitational name derived from the place of Nannau in Wales.

53. Narberth

It originates from the Welsh place called Narberth in Pembrokeshire.

54. Nash

It is a Welsh name that means “someone who lived by an ash tree”.

55. Nevitt

The name originates from an old English word cniht, which means a “young man” or “knight”.

56. Nuttall

This name is derived from the place names Lancashire or Nottinghamshire from where people migrated to Wales.

57. Oliver

Derived from a personal name from England that came from the Norman invaders, it is also a form of the name Olaf. It means “Olive tree planter”.

58. Pennoyer

Originally spelt as Penoyre, this name comprises of two Welsh elements pen, which means “head” and aur, which means “golden”.

59. Pierce

It is a patronymic surname from the Welsh personal name Piers. It originates from the name Peter, which comes from the Greek word petros, which means “stone”.

60. Priddy

An anglicized version of the name ap Redith, it means “Son of Redith”. It also comes from the old Welsh name Meredith, which means “the protector of the sea”.

61. Prothero

An anglicized version of the Welsh name ap Rhydderch, it means “son of Rhydderch”.

62. Prosser

It is a derivative of ap Rosser, which means “son of Rosser”.

63. Rees

The name means “son of Rhys”.

64. Rosser

This name is the Welsh version of the English name Roger, and it is derived from the old German name that comprises the words hrod, meaning “fame”, and gar, which means “spear”.

65. Sayce

It comes from the old Welsh word sais, meaning “saxon”. It referred to the English people settled in and around Wales.

66. Scurlock

The name originates from the Welsh personal name that is formed from the personal element ysgor, which means “camp” or “fort”. It refers to the fortified manors across several parts of Wales.

67. Sealy

Derived from the names Selyf or Selau, this name is a Welsh version of the biblical name Solomon. It means “peaceful”.

68. Sheldon

This English name was brought to Wales from Derbyshire during the late 18th and early 19th centuries. It means “steep valley”.

69. Teague

Derived either from the Irish personal name or surname Tegan, or the Welsh word teg, this name means “fair“ or “beautiful”.

70. Tew

In Welsh it means “Fat”, “stout” or “plump”. It could have begun as a nickname for someone who was fat and just stuck on.

71. Trahern

Derived from the personal name Trahaearn, it is made up of two Welsh words tra, meaning “most” and haearn, meaning “iron”. It could have been used to refer to someone who was as strong as iron.

72. Trewent

It is derived from a Welsh place name that was recorded in the medieval times upto the 20th century.

73. Uren

It’s a derivative of Brythonic personal name Orbogenos, also known as “Urgen” or “Urbgen” in older version of Welsh. The name is supposed to have originated from the word gen, which means “born”.

74. Vaughan

Originating from the Welsh word bychan it means “small” or “little”, it could have been derived to distinguish between the younger of the bearers of the same name.

 75. Voyle

The name originates from the Welsh word moel, which means “bald”. It would have been used to refer to a bald person or a dry patch of land.

76. Wathen

The name is derived from the Welsh personal name Gwaiddan, and it refers to someone from Robeston Wathen in Wales.

77. Wogan

It originates from the Welsh personal name Gwgan or Gwgon, which comes from the word gwg, meaning “frown”.

78. Wynn

It comes from the Welsh word gwyn, which means “white”, “fair” or “blessed”.

79. Yale

Derived from the Welsh word ial, it means “fertile land”.

80. Yarwood

This name is a combination of Welsh elements Ior, which means “Lord’ and a short form of berth that means “handsome”.

These Welsh last names have wonderful meanings. They could be perfect for those seeking a name change or even for those who are trying to trace their roots.

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Aarohi Achwal holds a bachelor’s degree in Commerce and a master’s degree in English Literature. While working as an intern for an English daily, she realised that she likes writing above anything else. The idea of being heard without having to speak appeals to her. She likes to write research-based articles that are informative and relevant. She has written articles on pregnancy, parenting, and relationships. And she would like to continue creating content on health and lifestyle.