Last name: Ellison

This most interesting surname has two possible origins. Firstly, it may be a patronymic form of "Ellis", which itself derives from the early medieval English personal name "Elis", the normal vernacular form of "Elijah", from the Greek "Elias", from the Hebrew name "Eliyahu", meaning "Jehovah is God", with the patronymic ending "-son", son of. Secondly, the name may perhaps be of Old German origin, from the Old Germanic female personal name "Elisind" and Old French "Elissent, Elisant", which appears in the recording of Adam filius Elysant in the Pipe Rolls of Hertfordshire in 1190. Early examples of the surname from the former source, which became popular among Christians due to the biblical prophet Elijah, include Adam Elisson, mentioned in the Poll Tax Rolls of Yorkshire in 1379, and John Ellyson, recorded in the "Register of the Freemen of the City of York" in 1487; while from the latter source the surname first appears in the Subsidy Rolls of Essex, when one Henry Elesant is recorded in 1327. One Thomas Ellison was an early emigrant to the New World, having embarked from London for Virginia in 1624. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Rogier Elyssone, of Berwickshire, which was dated 1296, in the "Calendar of Documents relating to Scotland", during the reign of King John Balliol of Scotland, 1292 - 1296. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.

© Copyright: Name Origin Research www.surnamedb.com 1980 - 2015

Want to dig deeper into your family history? Take a look at our page on building a Family Tree. Or get scientific and enter the exciting world of Ancestral DNA!

Surname Scroll

Enjoy this name printed onto our colourful scroll, printed in Olde English script. An ideal gift. View Details.
PayPal Acceptance Mark
Surname Scroll

Michelle Ellison
I never knew this about my last name. I will continue my search.

Tammy Ellison Foster

Reading this was interesting. Some of it I already knew. My great grand Dad came from Virginia to Georgia of the USA. His name was Alexander and he fought in the civil war and lost an arm. He died before my grandpa Harlee was born. I would love to visit Virginia and learn more about my family roots from there. I hope to do that some day.

Cheree Clark

This is right on top of it , I have tracked my 16th great grandfather an Ellisse born 1400 in Yorkshire, England. I have also went back further to find Ellis went to Ellisse to Ellison which finally settled in Clay County WV.