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Surname Mail - Meaning and Origin

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Mail: What does the surname Mail mean?

The last name Mail is derived from the old French term "maille" which translates to "mesh of a net," indicating that the original bearer of the name might have been a maker of chain mail. It could have also originated as a metonymic occupational surname for a postman or a nickname for a well-traveled individual. In some cases, it may be based on the medieval personal name "Maille," likely derived from the Latin name "Amalia." Like many surnames, the exact meaning can vary based on regional interpretations and familial history. Names with occupational or descriptive origins often evolved over time, potentially leading to various meanings. It's also possible that "Mail" is an Anglicized version of a name from another language. As with all surnames, tracing the exact origin and meaning can be challenging due to historical migrations and the passage of time. The use and interpretation of the name could shift depending upon personal, regional, and historical contexts.

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Mail: Where does the name Mail come from?

The last name Mail is believed to have French origins derived from the Old French term 'maille' meaning 'mesh' or 'link', potentially referring to a maker of chain mail in medieval times. It could also be an occupational or locational surname. A locational surname might stem from a place named "Mail", such as Le Mail in Calvados, Normandie, or 'Maillé' in various parts of France.

Another possible origin of the Mail name could be from the Middle English "male", referring to a bag or a postman, and thus originally designated to someone who carried a mail-bag or worked as a courier.

The surname may have possibly been anglicized when French Huguenots, escaping religious persecution in France in the 16th and 17th centuries, moved to English-speaking countries like England or the United States. Hence, it spread to different regions of the world through migration and colonization. Today, it is not particularly common, but individuals bearing this surname can be found in both English and French-speaking countries including France, Canada, the UK, and the US.

Variations of the surname Mail

The surname Mail is quite rare and can have multiple origins, namely English, French, and Irish. Variations can occur due to regional dialects, different languages, and even as a result of spelling mistakes in the records.

One of the probable English variants includes Mayle. It is also possible that the surname Mail has been anglicized from the German surname Mihl.

In the French context, the name Mail could be a variant of Maille or Maillot, where "mail" means "mesh" in French, and could have been a metonymic occupational name for a maker of chain mail.

The Irish surname "Male" may have been anglicized to "Mail."

Modern variations of the name, due to different pronunciations and spellings, can include Maile, Maille, Mael, Meil, Myal.

It is also possible that the last names Mael, Maill, and Maillé are different iterations of the name Mail. Due to limited resources or regional dialects and accents, descriptive names such as these were often altered, leading to the numerous versions of this surname.

Famous people with the name Mail

  • Alexei Mailyan: Russian international footballer
  • Lawyer Milloy: former professional American football player
  • Tom Mailey: Canadian film and television actor
  • Andrew Maillet: Canadian professional wrestler
  • Tom Mailes: retired Canadian curler
  • Matthew Maila: Fijian rugby union player
  • Jonathan Mailhiot: American composer and arranger
  • Gavin Mail: English television performer and author
  • Patrick Maille: French Hockey player
  • Lanre Mailes: Nigerian veteran actor and director

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