Q:

How do you learn about the ethnic origin of names?

A:

Quick Answer

To learn about the ethnic origin of a name, search for the name on a website such as Ancestry or Behind the Name. Ancestry provides information about common surnames, while Behind The Name offers data about the etymology and origins of first names.

Continue Reading

Full Answer

To look up a name on Ancestry, enter the name you wish to research into the search field. The site redirects to a page that lists the meaning and origins of the name, as well as other information, such as census records, immigration information and average life expectancy. The ethnic origin of a name often affects its meaning. For example, the surname Jeffs is English in origin because it is a short form of the English name Jeffrey.

To search for a name on Behind the Name, enter the name into the search field. The site then redirects to a page that lists the meaning, pronunciation and overall popularity of the name. The amount of information that is available about a given name depends on how common the name is. For example, a common name such as Aaron, which derives from Hebrew, comes with a full paragraph of historic facts. The site offers less information about unusual names.

Learn more about Education

Related Questions

Explore