Coffin Surname Meaning & Statistics
25,377th most common
surname in the world
people bear this surname
Most prevelant in:United States
Highest density in:American Samoa
This surname is derived from a nickname. 'the bald.' A mere variation of Caffin, the earliest form being Chaufin, which would readily become Coffin and Caffin. This form seems to have taken root in the south-western counties of England. Edward Coffin, the Jesuit, was born at Exeter, 1571 (Dictionary of National Biography xi.Read More About This Surname
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Coffin Surname Distribution
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Coffin Surname Meaning
Descriptive Writing for introductory reference
This surname is derived from a nickname. 'the bald.' A mere variation of Caffin, the earliest form being Chaufin, which would readily become Coffin and Caffin. This form seems to have taken root in the south-western counties of England. Edward Coffin, the Jesuit, was born at Exeter, 1571 (Dictionary of National Biography xi. 315). Several Devonshire families bear the name; cf. the Franchchauve, bald (v. Chaffe), and Calvin, from Latin calvus. Probably Chaufin was a dim. 'Calvus protests for foes he doth not care:
For why? They cannot take from him one hair.': Satyrical Epigrams, 1610.
Henry Coffyn, Somerset, 1 Edward III: Kirby's Quest.
Richard Chaufin, Nottinghamshire, 1273. Hundred Rolls.
Robert Coffyn, Lincolnshire, ibid.
William Coffyn, Devon, ibid.
Thomas Chafyn, 1505: Keg. Univ. Oxf.
1788. Married — Robert Gilbert and Mary Coflen: St. George, Hanover Square.
— — Thomas Coffin and Agatha Waterman: ibid.
1794. — John Chaffin and Isabella Blandell: ibid.
In France the enthusiastic devotion of Nicholas Chauvin to the emperor Napoleon I gave rise to the term Chauvinism. Chaufin was the Hundred Roll form; v. supra.— A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames, written: 1872-1896 by Charles Wareing Endell Bardsley
Local. Cyffin, in Welsh, signifies a boundary, a limit, a hill; cefyn, the ridge of a hill. This name has its origin from Co, high, exalted, and fin, a head, extremity, boundary. This family settled early in this country, on the sland of Nantucket, near Cape Cod, where the name is very common. The following humorous lines, descriptive of the characteristics of the different families residing on that island, were written by one Daniel Allen, a native of the island, more than a hundred years ago:
“The hasty Coffin, fractious, loud,
The silent Gardiner, plotting,
The Mitchells good, the Barkers proud,
The Macys eat the pudding;
The Bays and Russels coopers are,
The knowing Folger lazy,
A learned Coleman very rare,
And scarce an honest Hussey.”— An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names (1857) by William Arthur
The name of one or more medical men. Ferguson thinks this name may be corrupted from Kolfinn, from O. N. kollr, helmeted, and the proper name Finn; or that it was originally Coffing, a patronymic, formed from cóf, strenuous. Lower considers it the same as Colvin or Colvinus, who held lands in chief under the Confessor. It may also be the same with Caffin, from Fr. chauve, L. calvus, bald; whence Chauvin or Calvin. Coffin and Coffinhal, and Coffinieres or Couffin are found as French surnames, and there is a place called Couvin in Belgium, and Coffinswell is the name of a parish co. Devon.— Ludus Patronymicus (1868) by Richard Stephen Charnock
Amongst the old and distinguished knightly families now scantily represented in the county is that of Coffin. The principal stock, of which there were many branches, owned the manor of Alvington from the 12th to the 17th century (Pr.).— Homes of Family Names in Great Britain (1890) by Henry Brougham Guppy
This family possessed Alwington manor, co. Devon, temp. William Conq. and they still reside at Portledge in that manor. B.L.G. Colvin or Colvinus held lands in chief (probably the same) under Edward the Confessor.— Patronymica Britannica, written: 1838-1860 by Mark Antony Lower
Coffin Surname Variants & Similar Names
Coffin Reference & Research
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- Description: Descriptions are largely reproduced from 3rd party sources; diligence is advised on accepting their validity
- Incidence: The approximate number of people in a given area who bare the surname
- Frequency: The percentage of people in a given area that bare the surname
- Rank: Surnames are ranked by incidence using the dense ranking method; the surname that occurs the most is assigned a rank of 1; surnames that occur less frequently receive an incremented rank; if two or more surnames occur the same number of times they are assigned the same rank and preceding rank is incremented by 1
- Similar: Surnames listed in the 'Similar Surnames' section are phonetically similar and may not have any relation to Coffin