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Surname Waller - Meaning and Origin

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Plunging Into Ancestral Narratives: A Journey Through The Waller Lineage With iGENEA DNA Analysis

Tracing the roots of my family name 'Waller' through iGENEA's comprehensive DNA analysis turned a simple surname into a journey through centuries, cultures, continents, and even a surprise Viking connection. A world of historical adventures and familial connections opened, enriching my understanding of my heritage.

G. Waller

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Waller: What does the surname Waller mean?

The surname Waller has origins in Old English and German. In Old English, it is derived from the term "wallere," meaning "wall maker or mason". This likely referred to the occupation of the name's original bearers, suggesting that ancestors of those with the Waller surname may have been builders by trade.

In a German context, Waller is a topographic name from Middle High German 'wall' meaning 'rampart' or 'wall'. Thus, it could also have been a residential name given to a person living near a city wall or prominent boundary wall.

It's also worth mentioning that the distribution of the Waller surname is widespread and it can be found in many countries, including England, Germany, Sweden, and America. Therefore, the meaning and history might vary slightly between different regions.

Like most surnames, there can be more than one plausible explanation for its origin and the specific meaning might depend on individual family histories.

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Waller: Where does the name Waller come from?

Waller is a fairly common last name throughout the United Kingdom, Europe, Australia, and the United States. In the United States, the highest concentrations of people with the Waller surname are found in Texas, Kentucky, Virginia, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia.

In the UK, there are a great number of Waller’s in London, Oxfordshire, Gloucestershire, and Suffolk. Waller’s also appear to be more numerous than one would expect in Northumberland, Durham, and Lancashire.

Wallers are also found throughout Canada, but the most notable concentration is in British Columbia.

Australia is home to a wide swath of people who bear the Waller name. The city with the most Wallers is Sydney; however, Brisbane, Victoria, and Perth also have a large number.

It is believed that the Waller surname is of English origin, and began to appear in English records from as early as the 13th century. The original spelling of the name was usually Walehier or Walihier, and it is thought that it may derive from the old English pre 7th Century word "weala", which means foreigner.

Throughout the centuries the spelling of the name has changed, and today Waller is most commonly seen. Despite its variations, the Waller name is still relatively common in many countries around the world.

Variations of the surname Waller

Waller is a surname of English or German origin. Variations on the name range from Waller to Waler, Walrath, Walroth, and Wallroth. Spellings differ as well, with Waller typically seen as Waller, Waler, Wauler, Waullar, and Walra. Other variations of the name include Weilers, Wallauer, Wollers, Welle, Wallers, and Wallress.

In English, Waller is derived from the Old English words "weall" and "hearre," meaning a foreigner. The name was most likely used as an occupational surname for a waller, someone who repaired city walls or stone forts. In German, Waller is derived from the word "weller," meaning leather cutter. It was a popular occupational surname for those involved in the tanning and leather trade.

Throughout Europe, Waller has been spelled in many ways. It is the most common in England, Germany, France and other German-speaking countries, where it is spelled Waler, Walrath, Walroth and Wallroth. Other versions of the name are popular throughout Europe, such as Weilers, Wallauer, Wollers, Welle, Wallers, and Wallress.

Regardless of the spelling or variation of the name, most families likely share a common ancestor. They would have either been descended from a waller employed by a local feudal lord or from a leather craftsman working in a local tannery.

Famous people with the name Waller

  • Fats Waller: African-American jazz composer, pianist, singer and comedian who rose to fame in the 1930s.
  • Rahsaan Roland Kirk: Jazz saxophonist who was known for combining different elements of music into one.
  • Bonnie Waller: American actress and producer who has appeared in television shows such as Grey's Anatomy and The Wire.
  • Geoffrey Waller: English actor who was a regular character on EastEnders.
  • Alicia Waller: Canadian journalist and author of Eighty Days: An Unofficial Year of Change.
  • Mark Waller: English rugby union player who represented England at the 2008 Rugby World Cup.
  • Neil Waller: English former professional footballer who made his debut in the Premier League with Everton.
  • Dave Waller: American Director of Photography for films such as Industrial Light & Magic's Star Wars: Episode VII: The Force Awakens and Journey 2: The Mysterious Island.
  • Michael Waller: Australian painter and printmaker who has exhibited widely in Australia and abroad.
  • Robert Waller: American author and sculptor best known for his 1992 novel, The Bridges of Madison County.

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