Last name: James

Recorded in over sixty spelling forms as shown below, and found throughout Christian nations, this very interesting medieval surname is of both Biblical and 12th century Crusader origins. These are confused, and like the personal name and subsequent surname Jacob, it has its origins in the Hebrew given name "Yaakov". This was Latinized in the Roman Period of history, first as Jacobus, and then in the period known as "The Dark Ages" upto the 11th century a.d., as Jacomus. The actual meaning of the name is also a matter for some dispute. Traditionally the name is interpreted as coming from the word "akev", meaning a heel, but has also been interpreted as "he who supplanted". Both of these meanings are influenced by the biblical story of Esau and his younger twin brother Jacob. Jacob is said to have been born holding on to Esau's heel, and took advantage of Esau's hunger to persuade him to part with his birthright "for a mess of pottage". For a name with such indistinct origins, it has proved to be a great success story, with spellings ranging from James, Jayume, and Jamie, to Giacomo, Comi, Comiam, Cominetto, Motto, and even Gimson! The first recordings are to be found in England, because England was the first country to adopt both surnames and to properly register them. Examples from early charters include Christiana Jemes of Cambridge, in the Hundred Rolls of the year 1279, whilst one of the first settlers to the new colony of Virginia in the Americas, was Lewis James, who left London, on August 21st 1635. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Walter James. This was dated 1187, in the Pipe Rolls of the county of Gloucestershire, during the reign of King Henry 11nd, 1154 - 1189.

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Surname Scroll

Enjoy this name printed onto our colourful scroll, printed in Olde English script. An ideal gift. View Details.

j.james Read more: I have always wanted to have my DNA done. My last name is James and my dad as well but there were 2 generations before him that the name was passed done matriarchaly Threw my grand mother who's last name was James and her mothers as well. But When I see pictures of Jessi and Frank James. I am a exact looking match to frank James. And people have seen it and thought it was me in one of them old fashion wanted poster pics you can get at the fair or a amusement park. and I've seen a guy on the James web site that is related to Jessi James that is the spitting image of my dad.

Annetta (James) Hand

My grandfather was Jesse E James, born 1887 in Pennsylvania. His wife name Nellie. Trying to build a James family tree. Have a bit of info up to Great Grandfather X3. Russel, Jack, Margaret, Betty, Roy, Janet, Evelyn, Alice were Jesse's children. My father was Russel H. James. Don't know country of origin of Gr, Gr, Gr Grandfather "Patrick". W

Heather James (Leek)
My biological father is David Earl James from Centralia Illinois. His mother was Mildred H. (100% German) Father Roy James . David (my dad) was in Vietnam. He lost both legs during war by stepping on a landmine. He was a Marine. He had 12 siblings.

Yvette Mallory
My paternal grandfather's name was Paul James, he was born around 1896. He lived in Humbolt Tennessee. He was a white man that fathered three illegitimate sons by a black woman. He supposedly had an older brother who was a banker in Louisiana. I only saw him once when I was about 7 years oldI do have a picture of us together. I would love to connect with anyone who has information on my grandafather.

Victor Gemme
my first ancestor who came to Canada was William James in 1696 (born 1683, near Wimborn Minster in the Dorset) at Bay de Verde in New Foundland. He was the son of Nicholas James and Catherine North. Captured by the French army and then deported to Montreal, his name been frenchified into "Guillaume Gemme". As far i been able to search, the first James in England been mentionned after the 1066´s conquest... the first James was originally (almost 1000 years ago!) from Normandy (France). Before that (the dark age during when the name switched from Jacomus to James), i can't dig any deeper... like to know how long the Jacomus's surname last, or what was their surname before being christianized, or from where they was... i'd need to access roman archives to do so.

Ian Edward James
Traced my lot back 400 years. To Cornwall England. Not gone further than that.

My family last name generated from the Caribbean Island with last name James. How did my family arrive with this name.

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