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Surname Swaffield - Meaning and Origin

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Swaffield: What does the surname Swaffield mean?

The last name Swaffield is of Anglo-Saxon origin, derived from the Old English words 'swathe' and 'feld' which indicate a person who worked in a field of crops. Swathing is a process which involves cutting and spreading out sheaves of standing grains with a scythe in order to facilitate the drying process.

This occupation was frequently held by people of low social standing, thus it is likely that people who bore the last name Swaffield belonged to this demographic. Those with this surname may have also taken up agricultural labor such as such as working as herdsmen, ploughmen, shepherds, and other forms of rural labor.

By the 17th century, many people bearing the last name Swaffield had begun migrating to the United States and have been found in records from various states such as Connecticut, New York, Maryland, Florida, and California. In more recent generations, those of Swaffield heritage can be found practicing many diverse professions such as lawyers, medical professionals, and government officials.

No matter the location or profession, the history of the name Swaffield is a testament to the resourcefulness and hardworking nature of its earliest generations. This enduring legacy of strength and tenacity continues on to this day, as many individuals bearing the surname work to uphold the legacy of their ancestral family name.

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Swaffield: Where does the name Swaffield come from?

The last name Swaffield is not especially common anywhere today, though the UK does have some regions where its usage is more frequent. In particular, it appears in the counties of Somerset, Dorset, Sussex, Wiltshire, Devon, and Cornwall in the southwest of England. Here, it is likely an occupational surname derived from the Middle English terms “swape” and “fel”, which together referred to a area of of low-lying wet land suitable for growing meadowsweet and herbs.

The Swafields of this region may originally have been farmers, and the name is still occasionally found in Britain today. As a general rule, however, it is not especially common and the name is spread thinly across the UK. Recent records for the 2019 UK Census show that the name is still very rare, with less than 100 occurrences. Swaffields have also been found in the United States and Australia, where the name may have been taken by immigrants from the UK.

Variations of the surname Swaffield

The surname Swaffield is derived from the Middle English words “swå” and “fild”, meaning “sword” and “field” respectively, making it a topographic surname for someone who lived by a field of swords. Variations of the name include Swaffel, Swaffell, Swaffell, Swafield, Swaffeld, Swaffill and Swaffeld.

Another form of the name is Swanson. This derived from the Anglo-Saxon form, Swana, and listed in the Domesday Book of 1086 as being of considerable importance. It usually refers to someone who is from Sweden, although it has been suggested that there are other places associated with the origin of the name.

Sw Princess is an Americanized version of the name, originally being an anglicized form taken by a family who came to the United States in the late 19th century.

Swan-Field is also a variation of the original name, and possible combination of the two elements, and is often found in the United States.

Swanfield is a geographical name for a person from the area of Swan-Field.

Finally, Swinford is another variant, and is usually found involved with the spelling Swanford. It is an anglicized version of the Old Norse personal name “Svǫn fǫrðr”, literally meaning “Swen’s ford”. It is likely to be either a nickname or a surname indicating descent from someone given the name.

Famous people with the name Swaffield

  • Lorne Swaffield: Hockey coach
  • Norm Swaffield: Former professional footballer
  • Bob Swaffield: Former professional cricketer
  • Mark Swaffield: Professional actor
  • David Swaffield: Chairman of Barclays Bank
  • John Swaffield: Professional photographer
  • Jared Swaffield: Professional voice actor
  • Andrew Swaffield: Professional comedy writer
  • Jerome Swaffield: Former professional squash player
  • Henry Swaffield: Boxing champion

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