Surname Mason - Meaning and Origin
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Mason: What does the surname Mason mean?
The surname Mason is of Anglo-Saxon and Old French origin. Derived from the Old English term "macian" which means "to make" and the Old French "masson", it was typically used as an occupational surname for a person who worked with stone, specifically a stonemason. Stonemasons were skilled laborers who fabricated buildings, structures, and sculptures using stone. In medieval times, when surnames began to be used, people were often named after their occupation, hence, someone working as a mason would be given the surname Mason. In the societal context, the Masons belonged to the artisan class that held a significant social and economic stature. It's also believed that the name could have been assigned to someone living or working at a mason’s hall. This surname is common in English-speaking countries and is also found in various forms in other languages.
Mason: Where does the name Mason come from?
The surname Mason originates from England and derives from an occupational name for a stonemason. The term "mason" comes from the Middle English "masson", which is from the Old French "maçon" meaning "builder of walls" or "stone cutter", which in turn is probably derived from the Germanic "makjo". The name started to be used as a surname in England during the Middle Ages, mostly for people who worked as stonemasons.
Today, the name Mason is common in many English-speaking countries, including the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. According to recent census data, it's particularly prevalent in the United States, where it ranks as the 26th most common surname. It's also fairly common in England and Wales. Despite its English origins, it can be found in many other countries due to emigration, including South Africa, Jamaica, and even non-English speaking countries, making Mason a globally recognized surname.
Variations of the surname Mason
The surname Mason is of English origin with an occupational derivation from the term “mason” or a stone worker. The name originated from the Middle English word “mason” meaning a stoneworker or builder, a derivative of Old French term, "masson".
There are several variant spelling of the surname Mason, including Maison, Massen, Masone, Mayson, Masson, and Macoum. These variations are largely due to regional differences and phonetic spelling changes over time.
Some popular compound or double-barrelled surnames also exist with Mason as a component, such as Mason-Smith or Mason-Jones.
Surnames with similar origins in terms of occupation also include Stone, Potter, Smith, and Farmer. These names all had origins in English occupational terms.
In France, the equivalent occupation name evolved into the surname Maçon. In Italy, it is known as Masoni. In Germany, the surname is spelled Meisner or Meissner; both are derived from masonry occupations.
It should be noted that some descendants of individuals bearing the surname Mason might have changed their name over the years, either to Anglicize it or for other reasons, making it difficult to identify all variants.
Famous people with the name Mason
- Larry Mason: Former American football player in the NFL
- Rex Mason (Metamorpho): DC Comics Superhero
- Nick Mason: Drummer from the band, Pink Floyd
- Roger Mason Jr.: Retired American basketball player
- Dana Mason: Former English cricketer
- Andy Mason: Hall-of-Fame lacrosse player
- Gary Mason: British professional boxer
- Gunnar Mason: Norwegian snowboarder
- Ray Mason: American blues, folk and country musician
- Craig Mason: Former Australian rugby league player
- William Mason: American author
- Simon Mason: English footballer
- David Mason: English actor
- Dan Mason: Former Twins owner
- Hilary Mason: American CEO and data scientist
- Parren J. Mason: Former Justice of the Supreme Court of Maryland
- Harry Mason: Video game character in the horror Silent Hill series
- Auburn Mason: Award-winning R&B singer
- Jeremy Mason: Lead singer of The O-Mighty
- Ian Mason: Actor, Writer, and Producer