SDB Popularity Ranking: 12068

Last name: Giggs

SDB Popularity ranking: 12068

This is or rather was, an Olde English baptismal name of the pre 7th century, which has been 'converted' to a medieval surname. Recorded in the spellings of Gagg, Gagges, Gegg, Gegge, Gegges, Geggus, Gigg and Giggs, it derives from the ancient word 'gigg' or 'gygg', and describes someone with high spirits and light hearted. In its original personal name the meaning would have been an endearment, the name being given at a baptism. It would seem that essentially the same meaning has descended into modern times. The two wheeled horse drawn carriage called the 'Gig', was a vehicle for the 'light hearted' and could be said to be the 19th century equivalent of a two seater sports car, whilst the modern word 'gig' is a description for a one night pop concert. The famous Victorian etymologist Canon Charles Bardsley also recorded the surname 'Giger', which is probably occupational for a professional entertainer, however the last known nameholder is believed to have died in 1544 when Ann Giger was buried at St Peters church, Cornhill, London. Bardsley also claimed that the derivation was from the Latin 'giga', a fiddle, and describes a musician, one who played light music for dancing. It does not seem unreasonable that 'Gigg' may also ultimately derive from the same Roman source. Early recording examples include William Gegge of Lancashire in the Assize Court roll of 1263, John Giggs of Norfolk in 1431, John Gedge of Suffolk in 1568, whilst Charles Geggus is recorded at St Mary Whitechapel, London, on September 19th 1875. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Hugo Gigge, which was dated 1220, the 'Curia regis' rolls of the county of Suffolk, during the reign of King Henry 111, known as 'The Frenchman', 1216 - 1272. 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.

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Surname scroll for: Giggs

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