Recorded in many forms including Patria, Patrick, Patrie, Patrice, Patry, Petrie and Petery, this surname is usually of pre 10th century Olde French origins, but may also be Italian or Spanish. Introduced into England by the Norman after or at the Conquest of 1066, in most cases it is said to derive from the ancient name 'Patrice', itself a form of the Roman 'patricus', a patronymic which described a son of a famous father, or a member of the patrician class who controlled Rome during the period of the Republic. As Patrick it became a Romano-British name, and was particularly popular in medieval times because of its association with the 5th century St. Patrick, who christianised Ireland in the 5th century. In France whilst the name is also generally associated with St Patrick, it can be a developed form of the city of Paris, and hence a locational name. Patricus was recorded in the church registers of the county of Yorkshire in the year 1175, although strangely the earliest recording of a surname was even earlier being that of William Patric of Kent in 1130, whilst Charles Patre appears in Scotland in 1530.
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