Geneanet > Resources > Family Names > THOMAS

Origin and popularity of the name THOMAS


Thomas : 1: English French Walloon Breton German Dutch Flemish Danish Greek West Indian (mainly Haiti and Jamaica) and African (mainly Tanzania and Nigeria): from the personal name Thomas of Biblical (New Testament) origin from Aramaic t’ōm’a a byname meaning ‘twin’. It was borne by one of the disciples of Christ known for his scepticism about Christ's resurrection (John 20:24–29). The Th- spelling is organic the initial letter of the name in the Greek New Testament being a theta. The English pronunciation as t rather than th- is the result of French influence from an early date. In Britain the surname is widely distributed throughout the country but especially common in Wales and Cornwall. In North America the English form of the surname has absorbed many cognates from other languages (e.g. Assyrian/Chaldean or Arabic Toma and Tuma Albanian Toma and Thoma and Slavic surnames listed in 3 below) and their patronymics and other derivatives (e.g. Polish Tomaszewski and Slovenian Tomažič; see Tomazic). In France this surname is most common in the Vosges and Brittany. The name Thomas is also found among Christians in southern India (compare Machan Mammen and Oommen) but since South Indians traditionally do not have hereditary surnames the southern Indian name was in most cases registered as such only after immigration of its bearers to the US. This surname is also very common among African Americans.2: Native American (e.g. Navajo): adoption of the English personal name Thomas (see 1 above) as a surname.3: Germanized or Americanized form of Polish Tomas Tomasz and Tomaś Sorbian Tomaš (see also 4 below) Croatian Tomaš and Tomas Slovenian Tomaš and Tomaž Czech and Slovak Tomáš all meaning ‘Thomas’.4: Germanized or Americanized form of Sorbian Domaš: from the personal name Domaš a derivative of the Old Sorbian name Domasław based on the Old Slavic element domъ ‘home’ but later associated with the Biblical name Thomas (see 1 above compare 3 above).


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 3,016,441 individuals with the name THOMAS on Geneanet.


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