|1.||last name, Also called: second name a family name as opposed to a first or Christian name|
|2.||(formerly) a descriptive epithet attached to a person's name to denote a personal characteristic, profession, etc; nickname|
|3.||(tr) to furnish with or call by a surname|
|[C14: via Anglo-French from Old French surnom. See |
|to flee; abscond:|
|to chew (food) slowly and thoroughly.|
name added to a "given" name, in many cases inherited and held in common by members of a family. Originally, many surnames identified a person by his connection with another person, usually his father (Johnson, MacDonald); others gave his residence (Orleans, York, Atwood [i.e., living at the woods]) or occupation (Weaver, Hooper, Taylor). A surname could also be descriptive of a person's appearance (Little, Red) or his exploits (Armstrong).
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