McBride - Bumpus Genealogy
A B B O T T
English and Scottish: from Middle English abbott ‘abbot’ (Old English abbod) or Old French abet ‘priest’. Both the Old English and the Old French term are derived from Late Latin abbas ‘priest’ (genitive abbatis), from Greek abbas, from Aramaic aba ‘father’. This was an occupational name for someone employed in the household of or on the lands of an abbot, and perhaps also a nickname for a sanctimonious person thought to resemble an abbot. In the U.S. this name is also sometimes a translation of a cognate or equivalent European name, e.g. Italian Abate, Spanish Abad, or German Abt.
A L L I S O N
English and Scottish: patronymic from a Middle English male personal name: in most cases probably Allen, but other possibilities include a variant of Ellis or a short form of Alexander. In some instances, it may be from a female personal name, Alise or Alice (see Allis).
A L I A N O
Southern Italian: habitational name from a place named Aliano, in Matera province, Basilicata.
A R M S T R O N G
English (common in Northumberland and the Scottish Borders): Middle English nickname for someone who was strong in the arm. Irish: adopted as an English equivalent of Gaelic Ó Labhradha Tréan ‘strong O’Lavery’ or Mac Thréinfhir, literally ‘son of the strong man’, both from Ulster.
Anatomy of the " A " Surnames
Origin - Meanings of Surnames beginning with " A "
( Source: Dictionary of American Family Names ©2013, Oxford University Press )
A L L E N
English and Scottish: from a Celtic personal name of great antiquity and obscurity. In England the personal name is now usually spelled Alan, the surname Allen; in Scotland the surname is more often Allan. Various suggestions have been put forward regarding its origin; the most plausible is that it originally meant ‘little rock’. Compare Gaelic ailín, diminutive of ail ‘rock’.
A L B E R T
English, French, North German, Danish, Catalan, Hungarian, Czech, Slovak, Slovenian, etc.: from the personal name Albert, composed of the Germanic elements adal ‘noble’ + berht ‘bright’, ‘famous’. The standard German form is Albrecht. This, in its various forms, was one of the most popular of all European male personal names in the Middle Ages.
A D A M S
English (very common in England, especially in the south Midlands, and in Wales) and German (especially northwestern Germany): patronymic from the personal name Adam. In the U.S. this form has absorbed many patronymics and other derivatives of Adam in languages other than English. (For forms, see Hanks and Hodges 1988.)
A N D R E W S
English: patronymic from the personal name Andrew. This is the usual southern English patronymic form, also found in Wales; the Scottish and northern English form is Anderson. In North America this name has absorbed numerous cases of the various European cognates and their derivatives. (For forms, see Hanks and Hodges 1988.)