Surname Mayhew - Meaning and Origin
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Mayhew: What does the surname Mayhew mean?
The surname Mayhew is of English and Welsh origin and is believed to have originated from the Anglo-Saxon given name Moeﬀa. This ancient name is derived from the Old English words 'maegth' meaning ‘might’ or ‘magnificent’ and 'heafod' meaning ‘head’. It is believed that this given name was used in reference to a leader or a chief.
Over time, the surname Mayhew evolved in many different spellings, including Maffey, Mew, Maffie, Maffo, Mehew, Mayho, Moodie, and Myhew. The surname was very popular in England due to a large number of villages and towns named Mayhew.
The earliest known recorded use of the surname is Mabedie, which was found in the 11th century in the county of Worcestershire. The first recorded use of the Mayhew spelling was a Thomas Meyehouwe, who was recorded in 1273 in the Hundred Rolls of Oxfordshire.
Throughout history, Mayhews have been an influential family. In 1552, Sir Richard Mayhew was a member of the Supreme Council. His son Lawrence was a Member of Parliament in 1628 and 1640.
Overall, the surname Mayhew is an ancient Anglo-Saxon one with a history of strong leadership and a tradition of influence. It is believed to have initially been derived from the Old English words 'maegth' and 'heafod', which translates to ‘might’ and ‘head’. The first recorded use of the Mayhew spelling was in 1273 and Mayhews have been influential ever since.
Mayhew: Where does the name Mayhew come from?
The last name Mayhew is most commonly found in England. It is a relatively old surname that dates back to the 11th century and was especially prevalent in East Anglia. Today, it is most widely found in London, Kent, City of Leicester, West Midlands, and Upper Thames Valley. It is also present in lesser amounts in Essex, Cambridgeshire, Yorkshire, Wiltshire, Berkshire, and Hertfordshire. Outside of England, it is occasionally found in America, Canada, Australia, Scotland, and Wales.
The name Mayhew is derived from the Old English words "maeg" (meaning "son") and "hew." This combination of words refers to the offspring of a notable family or to an individual of high social ranking.
The name was spread across Europe during the Middle Ages due to its association with nobility. During the 11th century, the Mayhew family name was adopted as a surname and spread throughout East Anglia.
Mayhew is not a particularly common name in the modern world. However, it is estimated that there are over 2000 individuals with this surname in the United Kingdom today, and many of them have roots in East Anglia. Furthermore, there are smaller pockets of people with this name in other parts of the world including North America, Europe, and Australia.
Variations of the surname Mayhew
The surname Mayhew is an old Anglo-Saxon name derived from the Old English word 'maehw', meaning 'minnow stream' or 'small meadow'. There are many variants, spellings and surnames of the same origin, and these are largely a result of changes in spelling conventions over the centuries.
Variant spellings of Mayhew include Mahieu, Mahu, Mehau, Meheux, M’Heu, M’Hew, Mahew, M’Haw, M’Hoe, Mayoe, Mehew and Maweau. Other surnames with the same origin and similar spellings can include Mahon, Mayhoo, Meads, Mayehugh, Me
Mahony, Mauieu, Maude, Mahew and M'Hugh.
The Mayhew surname has also been linked with other surnames and variations, such as Maxey, Michaels, Mash, Maw, Mawby, Mawson and Melhuish.
Given the various spelling conventions and cultural influences, there may be a range of regional variations and spellings that have developed over time. Some of these spellings may no longer be in use, but they are all thought to be derived from the same origin.
Famous people with the name Mayhew
- Peter Mayhew: British-American actor who played Chewbacca in the Star Wars films
- Gareth Mayhew: British actor known for playing Commander Bran Merrick in the television series, Torchwood
- Mark Mayhew: British actor, singer and songwriter of the band Mayhew
- Ted Mayhew: British actor, noted for starring in the television series, The Bill
- Andrew Mayhew: Australian cricketer who played for England in the 1999 ICC Cricket World Cup
- Ian Mayhew: American actor, singer and songwriter, best known for his role in the musical theater production of The Color Purple
- Paul Mayhew Arnold: British actor known for his role as Ted Short in the TV series; The Whacko World of Sports
- David Mayhew: British actor who is known for playing Lord Quentin Langley in the TV series, The House of Eliott
- Malcolm Mayhew: British actor and vocalist; known for playing featured roles in the films Sword of Lancelot and The Day of the Jackal
- Jack Mayhew: American actor, known for his role as Gage in the movie spawn