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Surname Horrocks - Meaning and Origin

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Horrocks: What does the surname Horrocks mean?

The surname Horrocks is of Anglo-Saxon origin. It is a locational name, originally taken on by people who lived in or around the area that was known as Horrocks. The name is believed to have been derived from the Old English words "har," which means "grey" or "hoary," and "ac," which means "oak," therefore indicating a "grey oak." The geographical area that started this surname is unclear, but one theory points to Horrocks Green in Lancashire, England.

This surname dates back to the middle of the 13th century, with variations including Horricks, Horrix, and Horrocks. It was particularly prevalent in Lancashire and Yorkshire during early periods. Notable people with this last name include Jeremy Horrocks, a renowned mathematician, and Brian Horrocks, a British Army General during World War II.

The coat of arms associated with the Horrocks family displays three red goats running on a gold shield, symbolizing discretion, respect, and peace. Despite its seemingly simple origin, the surname Horrocks embodies a rich history deeply entwined with geographical location and the natural world.

Horrocks: Where does the name Horrocks come from?

The surname Horrocks is believed to originate from England, specifically from the region of Lancashire. It is considered a locational surname, derived most likely from a place like Great Horrocks or Little Horrocks. In Old English, Horrocks might mean “place at the rocks” or “dweller by the rocks.” With the passage of centuries, the name spread to different parts of the UK and also to other English-speaking countries.

Today, the last name Horrocks is still predominantly found in the United Kingdom, especially in the region of its origin — Lancashire. It is also fairly prevalent in other English-speaking countries, such as the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand owing to historical migration patterns. Additionally, a significant concentration of people bearing the Horrocks surname can be found in The Isle of Man. Like many surnames, the distribution pattern of Horrocks has been shaped by various factors including local culture, economic conditions, and historical events.

Variations of the surname Horrocks

The surname Horrocks is of Old Norse origin and typically signifies that one’s ancestors lived in a rocky region. In ancient times, the surname was adopted from the Norse word ‘Horg’ or ‘Hork’ which means ‘temple’. Over the years, the name has undergone several spelling modifications as per regional accents and dialects. Some variants of the name include Horecks, Horicks, Horrix, Horricks, Hoarrox, Hoaricks, Horrowcks, and Horrowix.

The surname also has been found in early documents in different shapes such as de Horrocks, Horrock, and Horocks. In some rare cases, Horrocks even changed to more English sounding names like Rock or Rocks. It also has an Irish version, written as O'Horgáin. Today, Horrocks, along with its variants, can be found in various regions including Scotland, Australia, the United States, and of course England, indicating the migration of people with this surname. A few well-known people with the surname Horrocks include General Sir Brian Horrocks, a prominent figure in the British Army during World War II, and Jeremiah Horrocks, an English astronomer.

Famous people with the name Horrocks

  • Jane Horrocks: English actress best known for her roles in films such as Little Voice, House of Elliot and Absolutely Fabulous.
  • Jez Horrocks: English singer and songwriter best known for his work with British electronic music group, The Prodigy.
  • Stephen Horrocks: British author, journalist and television presenter who is best known for his works on neuroscience, artificial intelligence and the psychology of language.
  • Emma Horrocks: English actress and singer who has appeared in several television shows such as The Office, Big Bad World and Emmerdale.
  • Bob Horrocks: British politician who served as the leader of the Green Party from 2003 to 2006.
  • Hans Horrocks: American actor who has appeared in films such as The Magnificent Seven, The Outlaw Josey Wales and The Hustler.
  • David Horrocks: British astrophysicist who is known for his work in fields such as cosmology and dark energy.
  • Sir Andrew Horrocks: English judge who served as the Chief Justice of the High Court for four years from 1966 to 1970.
  • Daniel Horrocks: English civil engineer who designed several iconic bridges such as the Conwy Valley Suspension Bridge and the Plymouth Breakwater.
  • Liz Horrocks: British actress who has appeared in various TV shows and films such as Waterloo Road and Doctors.

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