Last name: Jones

This famous surname, widespread throughout the British Isles, and the most popular surname in Wales, one in ten Welsh people being so-called, is nethertheless of English medieval origins. It derives either from the male given name John, or its female equivalent Joan, both Norman French introductions after the 1066 Invasion. Both names are written as Jon(e) in medieval documents, and a clear distinction between them on the grounds of gender was not made until the 15th Century. However, because western society has almost invariably had a male as family head throughout history, bearers of the surname Jones are more likely to derive it from a patronymic form of John, than a matronymic form of Joan. The personal name John, ultimately from the Hebrew "Yochanan" meaning "Jehovah has favoured (me with a son)", has always enjoyed enormous popularity in Europe, and particularly so after the famous Crusades of the 12th century. The name, which is found in some four hundred spellings, is in honour of St. John the Baptist, the precursor of Christ. The surname as "Jones", first appears on record in England in the latter part of the 13th Century, and also features as one of the most numerous settler names in Ireland, having been introduced in the wake of the Anglo- Norman Invasion of 1170. It is now found in every Irish county, especially in the larger towns, and has also been Gaelicized as "MacSeoin". The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Matilda Jones, which was dated 1273, in the "Hundred Rolls of Huntingdonshire", during the reign of King Edward 1st, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", reigned 1272 - 1307.

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Andrew Jones (not the earlier respondent)

Jones is the possesive of John. Until 1805 the Welsh surname was their head parents Christian name. This is why dating back further back on my dads side stopped at Rose Jones in the East Midlands, England. Many of the mining communities were interchangeable and quite often intermarried. Anyone saying their maladies can be traced back, I`m sorry, genetics and upbringing are far more complicated than surnames.

Melanie Jones

The English people fled to Ireland, Scotland or Scandinavia after the Anglo-Norman conquest in 1066, not 1170 — your facts are incorrect. There was a twofold "Norman invasion of Ireland" in 1169 and 1171, but it wasn't really an "invasion" by the Normans as much as it was utilization of the Normans and Henry II of England's "arrival in Ireland". After losing the protection of his last ally — the High King of Ireland Muirchertach Mac Lochlainn (he died) — the ousted King of Leinster, Diarmait Mac Murchada, was forcibly exiled by a confederation of Irish forces under the new High King Ruaidrí Ua Conchobair. Mac Murchada fled to Normandy and made a plea to King Henry II of England; he asked to use the King's armies to regain control of his kingdom in Ireland. Henry II agreed, and in 1169 Norman and Welsh forces "invaded" Ireland. By 1170, Mac Murchada had agreed with the High King to send Henry II's forces away as long as he could regain his title as King of Leinster. Unfortunately, Mac Murchada died almost exactly a year after regaining his throne on May 1st, 1171, before the arrival of Henry II. Now, in October of 1171, Henry II landed in Ireland with a much bigger show of force, and had the submission of all Irish Kings by November. There was much more to that story, including involvement of the papacy, but the fact is, 1171 witnessed an arrival and not an invasion. On a second note, every definition I can find of the Hebrew version of John, "Yochanan", is "Yahweh is gracious", "God is gracious" or "God's graciousness". I cannot find any other information to substantiate your definition of "Jehovah has favored me (with a son)".


Although Jones is the most popular surname in Wales, one in ten Welsh people being so-called, It is not originally a welsh name because there is no letter " J " in the Welsh alphabet.

Andrew Jones

We have no letter "J", but do have "si", similar to the English "sh" sound. We still have "Sion" instead of Jones in many cases.

I would love to talk with others with Jones. Please contact me.


im joshua jones how are u


I'm a Jones as well.

Lonnie Jones
If you would like to get in touch with me and read up on our family history please contact me on my Facebook, and send the message, "Jones Family, Our History". I will forward what information my cousin and her husband have gathered, as well as the plethora of other information that exists from other family members regarding our family's origins.

Lonnie Jones
I have learned from my cousins that we have family remaining in Australia, Brazil, Ireland, Scotland, and Wales as well as the U.S. of course. For those wondering what makes a 'Jones' a Jones- if you are searching for your origins here, we ARE CELTS, we may have mixed a little since, but that is where our ancestry lays. I myself am Type 0- as well as most of my family on all sides (Irish, Welsh, and Native American). Height runs in our family, although it does not pop-up all the time we do have a few members of the family well over 6'5. VERY pale skin, either black, red, or brown hair. Mostly blue eyes, some have green or very light blue eyes that seem grey in appearance until you get close enough. Almost exclusively farmers and soldiers in our family. VERY hard working family- and we LIKE having many kids- (I heard Alfred didn't stop 'trying' to have children with his Cherokee wife well into their 90's and they'd already had over 12!). Not very religious, and VERY independent.

Lonnie Jones
At some point after moving to Texas, our family began dabbling once more with 'other' races. I say dabbling, because us 'Celts' are rather proud of who we are as a culture and a race, but our family was not shy about showing love and accepting others. In what became my father's family a Alfred Jones married a full-blooded Cherokee women who had the adopted last name 'Smith'.

Lonnie Jones
During the Civil War our family DID fight for the Confederacy and I think this is where a lot of the misconception regarding why so many African Americans have this name. WE WERE NOT slave owners! In fact we fought from what I hear because we felt the U.S. had broken away from the constitution and was heading down the wrong path- something that is echoed in what our family did following what happen AFTER the Civil War. Despite fighting valorously as cavalrymen and being rewarded land as commendation (from which side we don't know) the family had a MAJOR disagreence in whether they should stay or not and quite a few Jones men left to BRAZIL. Yes, you read that right! A country that FREED African slaves and gave them rights long before the U.S. would allow African Americans the right to vote. The portion that stayed remained in the South and also migrated to the Republic of Texas.

Phyllis Jones- Mejia

Hi,I Am An American Women Of The Negro Race Jones Is Our Last Name. I Am From Cross Anchor,South Carolina.I've Always Thought We Aquired Our Last Name From My Ancestors Owners.

J. Jones

Well to say no Jones' were slave owners is very undermining. My direct Jones side was in Bermuda and the Turks and Caicos Islands for a long time and they owned slaves. My great-great-great grandfather had a Salt mining business in the Caicos Islands and the use of African Slaves was prominent during those times.

Lonnie Jones
Nearly everyone on the Jones' side here has Celiac, or gluten sensitivity. Our family arrived here at some point during the colonization, BUT were revolutionists during the war that made our country. I have heard that this is where the story of our family and Daniel Boone's family mingling began as a certain soldier in our family had come across Daniel Boone and the two went through some sort of traumatic life experience together- the end result, our family did marry into Daniel Boone's somehow (it's in our family tree records). Boone's family was also mostly of Welsh origin.


I never knew my Jones Great Grandmother who was Welsh. We have Celiac/ gluten sensitivity that I know off in close family members too, thank you Lonnie for the clue as to which ancestry it might have originated from.

Lonnie Jones
My cousin traced our family from the Southern United States to Ceredigion, Cardigan, Wales sometime in the 1200's (and predating the Wikipedia version which says a 'Matilda Jones' was the first known recorded instance) through much hard work and research. However, there is a LOT of misconception regarding our family's hard-earned name, especially in the United States. We are NOT of Jewish descent, but most certainly of Irish and native Welsh origins. The family moved between the two locations likely for over a thousand years as these were our family's ancestral lands, at least from the migrations of the Celts. We are VERY fair-skinned, and have red and black hair, and blue/grey eyes with some green, and a few people in the family have two different colored eyes (blue/green). Celiac disease is something passed on from recessive traits, and it is highly unlikely that a child will inherit but the Irish are known to have the HIGHEST instance of inherited gluten intolerance.

What country does this name from

Jayna Jones
But I'm Scottish

Michael Jones
So Jones is an English surname?

Brandon marque jones 2ns
Yes indeed

Noel Jones
Proud to be an Irish man - and proud to be a Jonesy - from Fermanagh but thought we arrived in Ireland "big time" with Cromwell - would be interested in any feedback

richard BRYN jones
my first name wasn't used at all No body used/uses first name,its always been Bryn, if some one calls me Richard i don't react(not that im a c... its just it doesn't register with me )its got me having to explain to said person's(gov/boss)that im known has Bryn never Richard my parents were possibly still high from the 60's and thought it be fun ,ive got a uncle Bryn and nephew fun times when family got together !!

"Jones" is the anglicized spelling of "Jonah," as in the Bible's "Book of Jonah," whose boat, headed to Tarshish (on Spain's Atlantic coast), was blown out to sea passing Gilbraltar. This derivation of the family name of the pre-English subjugation, ancient ruling clan of Wales, and the fact that "old" Jones' features and coloring caused many to be mistaken for "Jews," has much to do with the fact that Wales was a Hebrew mining colony. Th. Jefferson, whose father was a Welshman, is determined to have had "Hebrew" DNA. American Blacks not of "blood" Jones descent, upon emancipation (which Mr. Jefferson attempted before the Revolution, and in his original draft of the Declaration) took the name Jones to honor Charles Colcock Jones, who, as one worthy of a name which means "a gift from G-d," risked his life teaching the enslaved to read that they might establish their own relationship with the Creator of the universe, prior to Rome's subjugation of America in the "Civil War" (after Mr. Jefferson made importation of slaves illegal, dooming Rome's 2,000 year-old "Wall Street of slavery").

That's... informative...

Andrea Jones
I must correct you on American blacks. We do infact have the very same blood as any white American Jones as we have white ancestry not by purchase but by actual miscegenation. Let's not gloss over that.

Dave Jones
I completely agree with you Andrea

Mark Jones
Traced my family back to the early 1800's when they were one of the first families to arrive in a little town in the west of ireland. I am unable to find any earlier information. There is another Jones family in the same town but we dont seem to have any connection.

Joe Molloy
My great grandmother,Jane Molloy, was married to Thomas Loftus Jones in the mid 1800s. They lived in Chapelpark, Clontuskert, Co. Galway, Ireland. The Jones family probably originated in County Sligo.

Daniel Jones
What part of Sligo do you believe they came from?

Stephanie L Jones (Australia)
I recently learnt that the Jones name in my family came from the missionary called Jones that converted an Indian family member way back. This story had been handed down to my grandmother who was born in the late19thC.

Jones can also be the Anglicized version of the German/Jewish/Swedish surname Jonas.

Dave Jones
You're on to something many historians wanted glance over intentionally for reasons wont mention here...

David Jones
The surname Jones was imposed on to a large percentage of the Welsh population because English (ruling) officials could not speak Welsh. The PATRONYMIC system was lost forever.

Pedr ap Ioan

Not for ever Dafydd, some of us are claiming it back !!!! :-) Some never lost it we just became a minority in our own country.

Pedr ap Ioan

Not that we necessarily use it in the changing with every generation Patronymic system any more, they do still in Iceland! There are two forms of 'son of' in Cymraig (Welsh/Brythonic) there is the 'ap' form, and there is the 'ab' form. The 'ab' is the form that comes from the word for 'son' which is Mab. Then of course there are the Scandinavian son of's, Norwegian, Danish and Swedish. In Danish & Norwegian its 'sen' while in Swedish its 'son'. John being 'Johan' in all Scandinavia, put both together, and you have Johanssen in Danish and Norwegian, and in Swedish, Johansson both being Scandinavian forms of 'Jones' then ? So which came first, the chicken or the egg ?? By the way you guys and gals in the USA, the 'J' in Johansson and Johanssen, is not supposed to be pronounced as an English 'J', but as the 'I' in India, or indeed as the 'I' in the Welsh 'Ioan' . In the modern Welsh alphabet the, 'J' has been included, this is for modern words such as 'Jam' or indeed Jones, However there was never a 'J' in Welsh and personally I would suggest if learning or trying to work out Welsh as 'the language', be aware of the 'J' in society, but best to think of Cymraig/Welsh as not having a 'J' in the alphabet! Another little Welsh alphabet gem, is that the single 'f' is pronounced as a 'v' while double f =, 'ff' is pronounced as 'f' Enjoy !! :-)

Richard Jones
Golly Jones' getting a little terse with each other? Kinda sounds a bit like a typical family gathering. I was told (take it for what you will) that the name was always really just an English form trying to document a patriachal family naming system into clan-like naming system. Richard ap John, is Richard Jones etc. Sion ap William, John Williams. As I look back on the family tree I see William Jones marrying Jean Williams, having kids William, John, Mary. There's only 15 names (first and last) in the whole country! :)

Pedr ap Sion
Hi Richard. You are correct with the ap, but the name for John in Cymraeg/Welsh is one of three name variations...Sion, Ioan and Ieuan. As with my name Pedr ap Sion (English - Peter Jones). Why the surname of Jones appeared is because, when the Census first appeared here in Wales back in the early 1200's, people were asked what was their family name. Back then and to a lesser extent today, people used the area they were from, or the name of the land (Farmsteads etc). There are people I still know today who use the old form of naming (one man in my village is known as Ifan Pentir (Evan Pentir) even though he has the surname of Edwards).... the tradition has continued. As the majority of our people didn't know or understand english, it was put to them, what is your fathers name, hence Sion/Ioan/Ieuan. Ap is an abbreviated form of Mab (Mab is son, Mabon=sons...or the Gaelic Mac). Diolch yn fawr yn i chdi.

Sian Cadvan-Jones
I found your post most interesting as my own family were named after the places they were born. My grandfather took one further step by giving his children his middle name of Cadvan which has been passed onto all the grandchildren.

Jeuan David Jones
Hello, Point taken, tho' it's frustrating seeing the old chestnuts being brought out for roasting over and over, and not everyone reads the entire thread! I'm afraid I can't help your search, as I'm stuck at my 3x gt grandfather, Richard Jones, in Wales. I'm unaware of any my Jones early migrations, tho' I'm sure there must be one or two in the 19thC. I've recently upgraded my YDNA test to see if I can get better and more recent matches.

Richard George Jones
@Jeuan -- Hey, cuzz: it's nice to have someone posting here who's got some keen information, but persuasion's more helpful than abrasion; although that seems to be a dominant Jones trait, or so everyone who knows me is quick to suggest. My paternal line runs back to Irons, Michigan. My great-grandfather William Perry Jones served in the 11th (I think...maybe 6th?) Union Cavalry during America's Civil War. I'm pretty sure he, like me, was an irascible old cuss, too. I don't know anything about the family 19s earlier origins.

Jeuan David Jones
Let's be clear. Jones is not exclusive to Wales and nobody is suggesting that. It is very common in Wales for the historical reasons previously given. It means 'son of John' - 'John's son' which is one of the most common patronymic surname formations in many countries/language groups.

Brandy Jones
I know my Great-Great grandfather was half Irish- Tobe (tobias) Jones.

Alan Jones
I have traced -8- generations of my "Jones" family all here in America. I suppose my "Jones's" came here from Wales also to start a new way of life. Most were farmers....then the computer age arrived!! (->Delaware->South Carolina->Mississippi->Ohio)

Keith Alan Jones
Alan - What are the names of some of your earliest american ancestors? I also have my Jones line traced back 8 or so generations to the Delaware, South Carolina area. Ebenezer Jones was the real patriarch of the family: born in Delaware, served in the Revolutionary war as a fife, mustered out in North Carolina and then moved on from there fathering at least 12 children, many of whom had many children of their own.

Mary Jones

Was any of the 12 children named Denver? If so let me know. Thank You, Mary

Lola Jane Shaw
I don't know but my grandmothers maiden name was jones and I'm sure her father was from Scotland. Her mother was a Findley and she was Irish. My other grandmother was English and she was a Prather. Yes life works in unusual ways. My family is also part of the Dillard family who fought in the revolutionary war. Strange world but what are you going to do we have to live here personally I would love to see Saturn LOL

Phyllis Archer
I am trying to find the parents of a Green Jones b 20 June 1829 in Wytle, Va, USA, married Mary Jane Shanks b 27 May 1834 Hawkins County, TN, USA. I am having problems going backwards. Any help.

Jeuan David Jones
@Dave. Please get your facts right before posting nonsense. That's a gross simplification and just a misrepresentation of history. Please read my previous post. Also, there was no such compulsion to use English names when Edward I conquered the principality which is what I assume you mean by 'when the english invaded wales'. I think you might be confusing the consequences of the Acts of Union (from 1536), amongst which was the delegalising of the Welsh language, the universal introduction of English law which coupled with the ways that the recording of baptisms, marriages and burials were to be recorded led to the gradual changes affecting names and specifically surnames.

the reason jones is so wide spread in wales and an english name is because when the english invaded wales it was ordered that all welsh subjects were to have english names instead of the native welsh language in their surnames. it was something to do with tax collecting.

Jeuan David Jones
Bryan, it does not only derive from Sion as such. The available evidence points to Ieuan/Evan being the source names for Jones in Wales.

Bryan Thomas Jones
It's Welsh and derives from "Sion". Just because there is no Welsh "J" is, as said before an old chestnut. English scribes were transcribing words they could not even say in the best way they could. There are some appalling errors on this website, I'm afraid.

Catherine Coker-Davies
My mother was born to parents named Jones. I was told that they came from Wales from the freedom of slave trade.

Aneles Jones
Wow....This is Very Instresting and very helpful

E Jones
That information was most interesting

Glenda Jones
My mother a Clark, my father a Jones. My family geneology shows I'm part Welsh, Italian and French. :) I can live with that.

Jamila Jones
Glenda, my mother is a Jones (her father) but our family name is Clark (her mother). Originated in Greenville, NC. Wow...we could be related possibly. lol

David Jones
As usual, there is no explanation in this article of why this name is so common in Wales. From the late 16th century, the Acts of Union and succeeding legislation such as registration of baptisms, marriages and burials as well as other legal records encouraged the adoption of the anglicized surnames form rather than the patronymic Welsh system already centuries old. John (Ieuan, Iwan, Ioan, Sion, Efan, Ifan) was as popular in early modern Wales as in any other european country in any language or culture. As one of the common given names most commonly converted from the patronymic to the new anglicised form, it is therefore no surprise that there are so many Jones and Evans, both deriving from Welsh forms of John. As a result, very gradually and quite patchily, old Welsh names such as Dafydd ab Ievan, might be transcribed as David Jones, or David Evans. The 'no J in the Welsh alphabet' is an old chestnut. Until the standardisation of spelling in the17-18th centuries J and I were interchangeable, just like V and U were: Jevan, Jeuan.

gina parks
Daniel jones from chattanooga, tenn Civil war time sherman spared his house because he was a mason

Melissa Jones
Last names don't always follow country of origin- many slaves took the last name of their last owner or that of a previous owner, since it had been their parents' last name. After the end of slavery, when former slaves were given free reign to choose their own last name, country of origin could be completely negated. Also, many last names were "Americanized" (ironic, being that they were really Anglo-Saxonized) and adjustments were made to many family names due to immigration either on purpose or by misspelling. Finally, because tradition has held that women take the last name of their husband, any possible combination of countries of origin could result in the last name Jones. It just so happens that the surname originated in Wales and has remained popular there- the site isn't claiming that everyone with the last name Jones has Welsh ancestry.

Carl Jones
Seeking Carl Jones of Northworcesthershire College HND in Business Studies 1986-1987. Please contact Krish from Malaysia

Graham Jones
Half the black people in USA are called Jones so there is not always a Welsh connection.

my bampys surname is jones, no supprise when considering i come from Wales

Aeron Ap Jones
my mum and dad are both joneses, but i am welsh so there you go.

Pedr ap Sion
a fy hefyd gwashu!

cory jones
hey the one thing you cant keep up with for real is my family

Mary Jones

keeping up with the Jones. I have had others tell me they would love to write a book about my life and family as a Jones and what has happed in or life's. Jones

j. jones

have you researched the name, the free state of jones, which was located in jones county in ms.