Many sir names of old came from places persons came from such as Leonardo da Vinci. Leonardo had no surname in the modern sense, “da Vinci” simply meaning “of Vinci” the place he was born.
Other sir names can from occupations people held; one such name is SMITH.
The name originally derives from smið or smiþ, the Old English term a occupational name for a worker in metal, from Middle English smith (Old English smið, probably a derivative of smitan ‘to strike, hammer’)as in early 17th century Biblical English: the verb “to smite” = to hit.
Metal-working was one of the earliest occupations for which specialist skills were required, and its importance ensured that this term and its equivalents were perhaps the most widespread of all occupational surnames in Europe.
The Old English word smiþ comes from the Proto-Germanic word smiþaz. Smithy comes from the Old English word smiððe from the Proto-Germanic smiðjon.
Medieval smiths were important not only in making horseshoes, plowshares, and other domestic articles, but above all for their skill in forging swords, other weapons, and armor. This is the most frequent of all American surnames; it has also absorbed, by assimilation and translation, cognates and equivalents from many other languages
The use of Smith as an occupational surname dates back to Anglo-Saxon times, when inherited surnames were still unknown: James the Smith or James Smith of County Durham
Although the name is derived from a common occupation, many later Smiths had no connection to that occupation, but adopted or were given the surname precisely because of its commonness.
For example It is not uncommon for people in English-speaking countries to adopt the surname Smith in order to maintain a secret identity, when they wish to avoid being found. Smith is an extremely common name among English Gypsies; see also John Smith.
During the period of slavery in the United States, many other slaves were known by the surname of their masters, or adopted those surnames upon their emancipation.
During the world wars, many German Americans Anglicized the common and equivalent German surname to Smith to avoid discrimination.
Some Famous Smiths:
Will Smith was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on September 25, 1968. At 16, Smith met a DJ at a party. The pair became friends, and the rapping duo DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince was born. In 1990, Smith moved into acting with his role in the TV show The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air. in 1992 Smith crossed over into movies. He has been starring in popular films ever since.
Bessie Smith was born in Chattanooga, Tennessee on April 15, 1894. She began to sing at a young age and in 1923 signed a contract with Columbia Records. Soon she was among the highest-paid black performers of her time with hits like “Downhearted Blues.” By the end of the 1920s, however,
British actress Maggie Smith, born on December 28, 1934, in Ilford, Essex, England, has led a distinguished, varied career on stage, in film and in television over the past six decades. Her achievements range from performing Shakespeare opposite Laurence Olivier, to winning an Academy Award for her performance in The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie,
England, John Smith eventually made his way to America to help govern the British colony of Jamestown. After allegedly being saved from death by Pocahontas, he established trading agreements with native tribes. With his governing tactics called into question, he returned to England in 1609 and became a staunch advocate of colonization via his published works.
Born on January 27, 1850, in Hanley, Staffordshire, England, Captain Edward J. Smith, captain of the luxury vessel Titanic, played a role in one of the most famous disasters at sea in history when it sank in 1912.
Joseph Smith was born December 23, 1805 in Sharon, Vermont. He began experiencing visions as a teenager in Palmyra, N.Y. In 1827 he translated one of his visions into the Book of Mormon. He led converts to Ohio, Missouri, and Illinois. Imprisoned for treason after his efforts to silence Mormon dissenters led to mob violence, he was murdered by a lynch mob that stormed the jail.
Adam Smith was an economist and philosopher who wrote what is considered the “bible of capitalism,” The Wealth of Nations, in which he details the first system of political economy.
Stan Smith not the former 1# American tennis player but Stan Smith of the TV show American Dad
Stan Smith is a conservative breadwinner father who works for the Central Intelligence Agency, often prioritizing work in front of his family life; often in a struggle for a promotion, he is generally blinded and oblivious to other situational affairs. Stan Smith is married to his spouse, Francine Smith.
Stan is the parent of two children, Hayley Smith a liberal peace activist, and, Steve a scrawny, socially awkward adolescent in a constant attempt to meet Stan’s high expectations. A pansexual alcoholic alien named Roger live in the Smith household due to the alien being saved Area 51, Stan often finds Roger to be an nuisance, often interfering with Stan’s personal life, and causes trouble constantly. Klaus, Stan’s mentally unstable pet goldfish is a former German Olympic Skier, whose mind was transplanted into the body of a goldfish from the result of a CIA experiment.