Geneanet > Resources > Family Names > BEER

Origin and popularity of the name BEER


Beer : 1: English (West Country): habitational name from any of the forty or so places in southwestern England called Beer(e) or Bear(e). Most of these derive their names from the West Saxon dative case beara of Old English bearu ‘grove wood’ (the standard Old English dative bearwe being preserved in Barrow). In some cases the surname may be topographic in origin from atte beare ‘at the grove’. Some may be from Middle English bere ‘woodland swine-pasture’ (Old English bǣr). Compare Bear 1.2: English: variant of Bear 2 ‘bear’.3: North German and Dutch: from Middle Low German bāre Middle Dutch bēre ‘bear’ applied as a nickname for someone thought to resemble the animal in some way or as a metonymic occupational name for someone who kept a performing bear (compare 2 above). Alternatively it could have been a topographic or habitational name referring to a house distinguished by the sign of a bear or from an ancient Germanic personal name with this as the first element. See also Baer Bahr.4: Germanized form of Sorbian Běr: from a short form of the Old Sorbian personal name Běrisław (based on the Old Slavic imperative beri ‘collect’).5: Americanized form (translation into English) of German or Jewish (Ashkenazic) Bier or possibly of some other similar (like-sounding) surname.


Source : DAFN2 : Dictionary of American Family Names 2nd edition, ©2022 by Patrick Hanks and Oxford University Press
FANBI : The Oxford Dictionary if Family Names in Britain and Ireland, ©2016, University of the West of England
FANBI : The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Family Names in Britain, ©2021, University of the West of England

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Last name frequency

Geographic distribution of the 98,222 individuals with the name BEER on Geneanet.


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