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Surname Waagemeester - Meaning and Origin

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Waagemeester: What does the surname Waagemeester mean?

The last name Waagemeester is of Dutch origin, and literally means “scale master”. It was originally a surname for people who either owned a balance scale for weighing goods, or who worked in some capacity at a weighing station.

The earliest record of the Waagemeester family can be traced back to the 13th century in the Netherlands. The family at that time was centered in the Northern Dutch provinces of Groningen and Friesland.

In more modern times, Waagemeester usually signifies a job title, since the world of weighing and measuring goods hasn’t changed much since its origins. However, some of the modern descendants of the Waagemeester family may have decided to make the surname part of their permanent family name.

In addition to being a job title, the last name Waagemeester also signifies other qualities, such as, carefulness, meticulous attention to detail, frugality, and honesty. People with this name may have inherited these traits from their ancestors, who worked hard to make sure that goods were fairly weighed and measured.

In general, Waagemeester is an old but still surprisingly relevant surname. Its descendants may be proud to be associated with the long lineage of honest and hard working scale masters that have made the name famous.

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Waagemeester: Where does the name Waagemeester come from?

The last name Waagemeester is a Dutch or Flemish surname primarily found in the Netherlands, although it is also found in Belgium and Germany. It is a variant of the word waagmeester, which is the old Dutch for "Gauger." This was an administrative official in charge of ascertaining the correct weight of goods-in-trade. It is therefore possible that the original bearers of this name were officials or employees involved with taxation and customs.

The current prevalence of the name Waagemeester is still primarily in the Netherlands and Belgium, where it is estimated that there are anywhere from 1,500 to 7,000 people with the name today. Of these, the majority are likely to be found in the western and northern provinces of the Netherlands, as well as in the Flemish-speaking regions of Belgium.

The name is also found in denser concentrations in the Netherlands and Belgium’s large cities, such as Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague, Utrecht, and Brussels. In fact, a quick search on Dutch phone directories reveals there to be approximately 500 bearers of the name Waagemeester living in Amsterdam alone.

Outside of the Low Countries, immigrants and their descendants with this name are found in many countries around the world, particularly in those with large Dutch diaspora communities: the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and Suriname. Nonetheless, the majority of people with this surname still live in the countries of its origin.

Variations of the surname Waagemeester

Waagemeester is an occupational Dutch surname which roughly translates to weighmaster. Variations of this name include Wagemeester, Waegemeester, Wagemaker, Waegemaker, Wegemeester, Wegemakker, Wegmakker, Waagmaker, Waeghmaker and Weghmaker. There may also be some rural and regional spellings of the name.

Waagemeester can also be found as the variant surnames Wagemaker, Waegemaker, Wegemeester, Wegemakker, Wegmakker and Waagmaker. These variants originated from occupational roots, likely for someone who either modified, manufactured or cared for industrial scales and weights.

The surname Waghmaker can also be found in Dutch records and may be a surnamified version of the word wegemaker, which means surveyor. This variation may have originated from a family of surveyors or someone who was responsible for measuring and portioning land.

The prefix Wegh may have arisen when the surname was anglicized in countries such as the United States and Canada. The prefix itself, wegh, means path or way in Dutch, which could refer to the family's ancient profession as surveyors who had the task of laying out roads and boundaries.

Finally, Waegemeester and Weghmaker may also be different spellings of the same name since the 'gh' and 'ghm' may have been used interchangeably in some regions. Therefore, the variants of the Dutch surname Waagemeester are many, but they all remain true to the original meaning.

Famous people with the name Waagemeester

  • Arjo Waagemeester, Dutch professional footballer.
  • Thomas Waagemeester, founding member of Dutch band “De Kast”.
  • Jan Waagemeester, Dutch footballer who has represented various clubs including NEC Nijmegen and HFC Haarlem.
  • Jojo Waagemeester, Dutch “Swing/groovy” DJ.
  • Prisca Waagemeester, Dutch figure skater who competed at the 2014 Winter Olympics.
  • Lenie Waagemeester, Dutch rower and women’s eight world champion in 2005.
  • Willy Waagemeester, Dutch artist who was a successful draftsman.
  • Marieke Waagemeester, Dutch trumpeter and vocalist who has played with the Dutch Blues Orchestra as well as other groups.
  • Bram Waagemeester, Dutch field hockey player who represented the Netherlands at the 1996 Summer Olympics.
  • Alex Waagemeester, Dutch actor who had roles in television productions such as “Meiden Van DeBrug” and “De Infiltrant”.

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