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masc. proper name, from Old French Lorenz (French Laurent), from Latin Laurentius, literally "of Laurentum," a maritime town in Latium, literally "town of bay trees," from laurus (see laurel). The Italian form is Lorenzo. A popular given name in the Middle Ages, as a surname it is attested in England from mid-12c. Larkin is a pet-form. For some reason, the name since at least 18c. has been the personification of indolence (cf. also German der faule Lenz "Lazy Lawrence"). But in Scotland, the pet form Lowrie has been used for "a fox" (c.1500), also for "a crafty person" (1560s).