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Surname Bump - Meaning and Origin

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Bump: What does the surname Bump mean?

The last name Bump is of Anglo-Saxon origin, deriving from the Old English word "bump", which was used to refer to a hill or a ridge. It would typically have been used as a topographic surname for someone who lived near a hill or a similar geographical feature. Like many ancient Anglo-Saxon surnames, Bump has evolved over time into many different spellings, including Bumpus, Bumphrey, Bumpstead, and others. Its exact meaning has also evolved and might vary depending on context and location. Some scholars and etymologists suggest it may also refer to a "lump" or "swelling," resembling the nature of a hill or ridge. It should also be noted that like many surnames, Bump can be randomly assigned, which means not all people sporting the Bump surname can trace their ancestry back to an ancestor living near a hill or ridge. As with many surnames, its origin and meaning might be often disputable, or open to various interpretations.

Bump: Where does the name Bump come from?

The surname Bump primarily originates from England, specifically from the regions that spoke Old English. The name is derived from the Old English word "bump," meaning "lump" or "swelling," which was often given as a nickname to someone who was plump or stout. In some cases, it may have denoted a person who resided in or near a hill or a raised plot of ground, hence topographic. It's also considered a derivative of the name "Bonpasse," which in Middle English means "good passage."

As it relates to geographical distribution today, Bump is not a common surname and can be found in small numbers across the world, with higher concentrations in the United States, mostly in New York, California, and Michigan. It is also seen in Canada, England, and Australia, albeit in lesser instances. This rarity in occurrence of the Bump surname means bearers of the name often have some degree of genealogical relationship.

Variations of the surname Bump

The surname Bump has several variants and phonetic equivalents due to its English origin. These different forms have been created over time due to factors like language development, spelling errors, and region-specific pronunciations. Variants of the name Bump include Bumpe, Bumpus, Bumps, Bomp, Bompas, Bumpass, Bumph, Bumphus and Bumpp.

Among these, Bumpus and Bumpass have become quite well-known due to their diffusion in the U.S, where many of the Bump emigrants settled during the 17th and 18th centuries. Sometimes, an ‘s’ was added at the end of the original name Bump, possibly to make it sound more aristocratic or to Anglicize it.

Bumpe and Bumph are lesser-known variants that are uncommon but have the same root. Other possible variants are Bompp and Bompe, where the ‘u’ has been replaced with an ‘o’.

Finally, similar surnames that could potentially have the same lineage and etymology as Bump include Bum, Bumb, Bumby, and Bumpy. These surnames all likely come from the Old French term "bon pas," meaning "good step" or "good path."

Famous people with the name Bump

  • John Bump: An American new age composer, pianist, and music educator.
  • Michael Bump: An American drummer and percussionist who has performed with several music bands.
  • Ann Bump: A singer-songwriter who gained fame in the 2000s.
  • Chris Bump: A professional poker player from the United States.
  • Philip Bump: A national correspondent for The Washington Post, covering primarily politics.
  • Stephen Bump: A famous architect known for his residential designs.
  • Brian Bump: A stand-up comedian and writer in the US.
  • Jeremy Bump: A former competitive swimmer who represented the United States in international events.
  • Frances Bump: An accomplished ballet dancer who has performed with numerous dance companies worldwide.
  • Paul Bump: A renowned scholar and professor of English literature.

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