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Surname Johnson - Meaning and Origin

all surnames with 'J'

Discovering the Multi-Regional Roots of my Surname ‘Johnson’ through iGENEA DNA Analysis

Unraveling my DNA puzzle with iGENEA has been a profound journey into the depths of my surname's “Johnson” origin and history. The DNA analysis offered surprising revelations, ranging from Scandinavian to Jewish Ashkenazi and Eastern European roots, reshaping my understanding of my family name and its global footprint.

W. Johnson

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Johnson: What does the surname Johnson mean?

The surname Johnson is of English origin and is patronymic in nature. It means "son of John." The name itself, John, originally comes from the Hebrew name Yohanan, which means "Jehovah has been gracious." Johnson is common in the United States, United Kingdom, and Scandinavia. Traditionally, the name was given to distinguish the son of a man named John in a community. As such, several unrelated families could have independently adopted the surname Johnson, which contributes to its widespread use today. The name has been around for hundreds of years, becoming most common with the rise of Christianity as John was a common name for males due to its biblical significance. Notable figures with this last name include American presidents Andrew Johnson and Lyndon B. Johnson, and famed English dictionary author Samuel Johnson.

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Johnson: Where does the name Johnson come from?

The surname Johnson is of English origin and has its birth from a patronymic tradition, simply meaning "son of John". It was first documented in England during the 13th century after the Norman Conquest. The name John, from which Johnson is derived, comes from the Hebrew name Yohanan, which means "Jehovah has favored".

Today, Johnson is one of the most popular and widespread surnames in the English-speaking world. It is most common in the United States, where it became widely distributed due to early colonial settlers and a high rate of English immigration. According to U.S. census data, Johnson is the second most common surname in the country. The name is also commonly found in England, Australia, Canada, and parts of Scandinavia (specifically Sweden and Denmark), although the spelling may often be altered in non-English-speaking countries. Despite its wide distribution, the highest concentration of individuals with the Johnson surname is in the United States, due to its large population size and its early colonization by the English.

Variations of the surname Johnson

The surname Johnson is of English origin and is patronymic, derived from the given name John and means "son of John." Variants of the surname Johnson may include Johnnson, Jonson, Johnsson, Johanson, Johanneson, and Johansson, Johansen in Scandinavian countries. It could also be Jansen, Janssen in Dutch and German-speaking countries or Ioannou in Greece.

The spelling variations may primarily occur depending on the language and country of origin. In many cases, it is influenced by factors such as translation, transcription, or even phonetics. For example, Jonsson is a common spelling in Sweden, while Johansen is popular in Norway and Denmark.

In countries where English is not the primary language, the equivalent of Johnson may be used. For instance, the Italian surname Giannini or the Russian surname Ivanov also mean "son of John."

Remember, surnames may have evolved or been anglicized over time, so these are only potential variants or similar surnames, not guarantees of lineage or descent from the same family.

Famous people with the name Johnson

  • Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson: Former professional wrestler and Hollywood actor.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson: The 36th President of the United States.
  • Robert L. Johnson: Co-founder of the television network BET.
  • Magic Johnson: Retired professional basketball player for the Los Angeles Lakers.
  • Don Johnson: American actor known for "Miami Vice" and "Nash Bridges".
  • Dakota Johnson: Actress, daughter of Don Johnson and Melanie Griffith, known for "Fifty Shades of Grey".
  • Michael Johnson: Retired sprinter who won multiple Olympic gold medals.
  • Boris Johnson: The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.
  • R. Kelly (Robert Kelly): American singer, songwriter, record producer and convicted sex offender.
  • Jack Johnson: First African American world heavyweight boxing champion.
  • Andre Johnson: Retired professional football wide receiver for the Houston Texans.
  • Jimmy Johnson: Former coach of the Dallas Cowboys and Miami Dolphins.
  • Howard Johnson: Namesake of the iconic hotel chain.
  • Amy Johnson: British aviation pioneer.
  • Samuel Johnson: 18th-century English writer and lexicographer.
  • K Johnson: Renowned English cricketer.
  • Ashley Johnson: American actress known for roles in "Growing Pains" and "Blindspot".

Other surnames

JohnsJohnsenJohnson or Salisbury will almost certainly have deJohnssenJohnssonJohnstonJohnston of BarraJohnstone

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