Ellis Surname Meaning & Statistics

1,448th most common

surname in the world


Approximately 377,712

people bear this surname


Most prevelant in:

United States

Highest density in:

Jamaica

Definition:

In the whole range of family nomenclature there is perhaps no name which admits of more variety of origin, or a greater number of differing forms. “Elies or Ellis in British,” says Hals, in D. Gilbert’s Cornwall, iii. 429, “is ason-inlaw by the wife, and Els or Ells, a son-inlaw by the husband.

Read More About This Surname

Ellis Surname Distribution

CountryIncidenceFrequencyRank in Nation
United States208,0680.064853365%113
England51,3730.095135185%75
South Africa22,8500.042313248%266
Australia20,5510.087205404%97
Canada16,3950.046277578%211
Jamaica6,8710.252797011%65
Nigeria4,5850.002568383%672
Ghana4,4730.016540268%332
Wales4,2330.136548387%44
New Zealand3,5450.077967779%118
Scotland2,7630.052132075%259
Liberia2,7540.062633614%67
Germany2,6900.003332673%722
Zambia1,5060.010024419%178
Brazil1,3040.000642346%1,727
Uganda1,1200.003167690%254
France1,0900.001652542%1,091
Panama1,0770.031622406%259
Ireland9500.020683199%482
Mexico8900.000743443%1,303
Mali8760.005555556%147
Kenya8630.001894788%466
Namibia8550.040462321%98
Northern Ireland8350.046388889%196
Guatemala6770.004283001%359
Spain6490.001395465%3,051
Netherlands6250.003706163%960
Saudi Arabia5770.001923701%510
Trinidad and Tobago5580.042017471%352
Hong Kong5460.007562641%316
Malaysia5310.001756359%659
Costa Rica5200.011141832%471
Italy4930.000811358%1,318
Dominican Republic4690.004519059%372
The Bahamas4530.128890545%101
United Arab Emirates4430.004689816%578
Israel4360.005312926%428
Mongolia4040.013782281%112
Barbados3960.138947368%95
Nicaragua3350.005517996%264
Chile3060.001721713%916
Venezuela3010.000996481%742
Belize2990.085495013%65
India2930.000023477%12,194
Colombia2800.000586682%1,079
Switzerland2610.003198177%410
Singapore2540.004704401%489
Guyana2530.032233652%349
Poland2390.000620844%451
Indonesia2370.000093986%6,133
Argentina2240.000524965%949
Greece2210.001986868%306
Russia2150.000147191%5,288
Uruguay2080.006329280%266
Kuwait1920.006262537%205
Suriname1860.034819137%39
Oman1860.004663643%198
Turkey1750.000228257%1,026
Belgium1710.001526504%616
Sweden1670.001722681%641
Austria1570.001841161%245
Norway1310.002556405%449
Jordan1230.001858239%279
Guernsey1160.183878894%23
Puerto Rico1090.003015143%310
Zimbabwe1020.000780937%1,200
Peru1000.000324526%1,026
Denmark980.001737675%534
Bulgaria930.001283524%355
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines920.084403670%49
Saint Lucia870.048333333%66
Ukraine850.000198478%2,800
Finland850.001556646%429
Portugal830.000792151%658
Croatia780.001817922%208
Qatar680.003127825%221
Malta620.014901876%156
Jersey610.061616162%34
Tanzania490.000109061%1,169
Bahrain490.003968990%160
Turks and Caicos Islands440.139869032%68
Cyprus430.004966058%164
United States Virgin Islands420.039471829%50
Isle of Man410.047674419%39
Cayman Islands370.066719561%51
Antigua and Barbuda330.038240918%58
Thailand320.000049646%809
Philippines310.000030969%1,258
Luxembourg260.004729853%94
Czech Republic220.000209177%2,041
British Virgin Islands200.067711684%34
Japan190.000014949%988
Grenada160.015484670%191
Belarus160.000168969%1,232
Kazakhstan140.000080995%979
Gibraltar110.036665444%28
Vietnam100.000011147%605
South Korea100.000019832%453
Afghanistan100.000038427%435
Taiwan80.000034191%703
Northern Mariana Islands80.014846983%105
Monaco80.021650880%20
Azerbaijan70.000073862%1,206
Georgia60.000133615%1,562
Bermuda60.009340411%75
Iceland60.001834582%168
Kyrgyzstan40.000068681%1,145
Pakistan40.000002127%1,068
Bolivia30.000029918%347
Iraq30.000008332%487
Ecuador30.000018982%663
El Salvador30.000046866%302
French Polynesia30.001118276%29
Honduras30.000035067%284
Angola30.000015638%53
Lithuania20.000068040%129
Brunei20.000508696%77
Saint Kitts and Nevis20.003636364%45
Morocco20.000005997%359
Romania20.000010029%636
Uzbekistan20.000006559%352
Guam20.001255036%78
Bhutan10.000133214%91
Macau10.000162734%102
New Caledonia10.000386163%27
Botswana10.000049385%102
Paraguay10.000014742%274
Moldova10.000028109%764
Samoa10.000532425%20
Tonga10.000970535%25
Fiji10.000116545%97
Estonia10.000075998%113
Hungary10.000010122%320
Swaziland10.000078864%91
Cook Islands10.006678242%16
Sri Lanka10.000004932%348
Seychelles10.001099566%40
Cameroon10.000004905%247
Latvia10.000050088%151
Palau10.004784460%10
PlaceIncidenceFrequencyRank in Area

Ellis Surname Meaning

Descriptive Writing for introductory reference

In the whole range of family nomenclature there is perhaps no name which admits of more variety of origin, or a greater number of differing forms. “Elies or Ellis in British,” says Hals, in D. Gilbert’s Cornwall, iii. 429, “is ason-inlaw by the wife, and Els or Ells, a son-inlaw by the husband. Ella or AElla is a well-known regal name of Anglo-Saxon times, and its genitive form would in later days become Ellis. From these two sources some of our very numerous families may have sprung, but there is little doubt that the surname Ellis has for the most part been formed from the scripture name Elias, which does not occur as an Anglo-Saxon name, but which was in use in France as early as the days of Charlemagne, as a baptismal designation, and afterwards gave name to several families of Elie. Elias, though uncommon now as a Christian name, was not so in the early Norman reigns, and indeed it had become hereditary at the time of the Norm. Conq., in the form of Alis. William Alis, mentioned in Domesd. and by Orderious Vitalis, was progenitor of the Ellises of Kiddal, co. York, and Stoneacre, co. Kent, from whom sprang Sir Archibald Ellys, a crusader temp. Richard I., who is said to have originated the cross and crescents so common to the Ellis coat-armour. Ellis in later times, both in Wales and England, became a common personal name, and consequently there are in both countries many families of distinct origin. See ' Notices of the Ellises,’ Lond. 1857. and Peds. of Ellis and Fitz-Ellis in ‘ Topographer and Genealogist, ’ vol. iii. The principal forms of this name in the H.R. are Eleys, Elice, Elies, Elis, Elys; and other proven variations are Alis, Halis, Elias, Helias, Ellys, Elles, Hellis, Hellys, Hilles, Helles, Hollys, Holys, Holies, lies, Ilys, Eyles, and Eales. Of course several of these forms are etymologically traceable to other and very different sources. Ellison, Alison, and Fitz-Ellis are also well-known surnames. Inf. W. S. Ellis, Esq.

Patronymica Britannica, written: 1838-1860 by Mark Antony Lower

This surname is derived from the name of an ancestor. 'the son of Ellis'; O.E. Elis or Elys (Elias). Ellison may originate from the English form—thus Elis, Elis-son; or from the O.F. form, thus Elie, Elie-son. Instances of both are given below, but the Hundred Rolls abound with the name in all counties. This name was wonderfully popularized throughout Western Europe by the Crusaders.'

Elis Kneyt, Buckinghamshire, 1273. Hundred Rolls.

Henry fil. Elis, Cumberland, ibid.

Agnes uxor Elys, Cambridgeshire, ibid.

Simon fil. Elys, Bedfordshire, ibid.

Nicholas fil. Elye, Cambridgeshire, ibid.

Roger fil. Elye, Salop, ibid.

Robert Elleson, 1379: Poll Tax of Yorkshire.

Adam Elisson, 1379: ibid.

Stephanus Elisson, smyth, 1379: ibid.

Alicia Elys, wyf, 1379: ibid.

Elys Burton, 1379: ibid.

In some cases, no doubt, Ellison is Elen-son.

Johannes Elynson, 1379: Poll Tax of Yorkshire.

Johannes Elynson, 1379: ibid.

Alicia serviens Elene, 1379: ibid.

Elena Mott, 1379: ibid.

Elene was wonderfully popular at the period. Elynson, of necessity, would become Ellison. The diminutives of the two names underwent the same confusion (v. Elliot and Eliot). I may add that Ellis was still a familiar font-name in the 16th century:

Ellis Pigot, Didsbury, Manchester, 1597: Wills at Chester.

Ellis Pollard, Great Harwood, 1587: ibid.

1548. Ellis Pollard and Johanna Chapman: Marriage Lic. (London).

A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames, written: 1872-1896 by Charles Wareing Endell Bardsley

From Elias, q.v., a favorite personal name in the Middle Ages, through OE. Elis or Elys. The “name was wonderfully popularized throughout western Europe by the Crusaders” (Bardsley). John Heles was burgess of Dundee in 1482 (RAA., II, 213). David Elleis was “keypar of the parroche kirk” of Aberdeen in 1565 (CRA., p. 360), and John Elleiss appears there in 1522 (ibid., p. 104). Richard Eleis rendered to Exchequer the accounts of the bailies of the burgh of Jedburgh in 1563 (ER., XIX, p. 223), and David Elies was appointed “to teche and leir ony barnis abon sax yeris” in Stirling in 1557 (SBR., p. 71). Andrew Elleis, notary in Kirkwall, 1634 (OSR., I, p. 279), and Alexander Elleis had a charter of lands in Newington in 1639 (BOEC., X, p. 212). Alexander Ealis is recorded in Melrose, 1641, and George Elleis in Darnick, 1662 (RRM., I, p. 87; 11, II. 3). Patrick AEles was cordiner in Edinburgh, 1648 (Edinb. Marr,), Magister John Eleis of Eleistoune was heir in lands in the lordship of Kilpount, 1686 (Retours, Lanark, 261), Andrew Elliss appears in Regorton, 1719 (Dunkeld), and Bessie Ellies in Caimwheep, 1738 (Moray). The wife of James Anderson, author of the Diplomatum Seotiae Thesaurus, was an Ellies of Elieston or Ellistoune, West Lothian, a family said to be of English origin (Stodart). Aleis, Ales, and Aless are given in index to ROA. as forms of Ellis. Eilleis 1677, Eleiss 1685, Eles 1606, Elies 1670.

The Surnames of Scotland (1946) by George Fraser Black (1866-1948)

Ellis. —Fairly well distributed over England and Wales, excepting in the four northern counties, where its place may be taken by Elliott. It is represented in Wilts and Lancashire by Ellison. It is at present most numerous in Devon, Cambridgeshire, Essex, Kent, and the West Riding.

Homes of Family Names in Great Britain (1890) by Henry Brougham Guppy

Contracted from Elias.

An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names (1857) by William Arthur

Ellis Surname Variants & Similar Names

Ellis Variants

SurnameSimilarityIncidencePrevalency
Hellis91288/
Ellison8368865/

Similiar Surnames

SurnameSimilarityIncidencePrevalency
Elliss91655/
Ellise9163/
Ellias911463/
Ellies91526/
Eallis912/
Eillis9136/
Ellios917/
Ellisy91718/
Ellisa91125/
Ellius9143/
Ellois9131/
Aellis9122/
Elliis9111/
Elliso9111/
Elleis914/
Eellis914/
Ellisi913/
Elliws912/
Eullis911/
Elluis911/
Ells892526/
Elis8910328/
Elliase83--
Ellissy83309/
Elliyas8374/
Ellisse8354/
Ellious8332/
Ellisya8325/
Ellisah8318/
Elleisy8314/
Whellis8311/
Ellissa838/
Elleisi835/
Ellowis834/
Eulliss833/
Ellaisy833/
Eillies832/
Ewillis831/
Elliasa831/
Elliaus831/
Elliois831/
Elliose831/
Ellisii831/
Ellisou831/
Elloise831/
Elias80628196/
Ollis802803/
Elles803668/
Allis802906/
Ellse80476/
Eliss80139/
Elwis80170/
Ellus809/
Eells801690/
Elies801066/
Ealls80--
Eills8049/
Ellas80366/
Elise80296/
Eleis801/
Eylis80--
Elisa8038742/
Elius805913/
Ehlis80427/
Illis80244/
Elisi80206/
Eulis80146/
Ellys80141/
Elios80106/
Elais8083/
Uells8069/
Eliis8065/
Elyis8054/
Eliso8040/
Eulls8038/
Elois8035/
Aelis8027/
Ellos8020/
Ullis8011/
Eelis8011/
Elliz808/
Elisu807/
Eliys806/
Eilis805/
Eluis805/
Eolis805/
Ealis804/
Ellsa803/
Ellsi803/
Elhis801/
Elisy801/
Ewlls801/
Uelis801/
Elleissy77723/
Ellouise777/
Ellaissi775/
Elliseau772/
Ellisyah772/
Elliyaas771/
Els7547845/
Ellice73281/
Allies732396/
Alliss73299/
Ellsey7378/
Elless7377/
Elwiss7326/
Ealles731/
Whells732/
Eilles7312/
Ewells7325/
Illius7365/
Allias73817/
Allise7339/
Olliss731/
Whelis732/
Ehleis73--
Ollise731/
Elisea731037/
Alleis73--
Eliseu739286/
Eliasi737802/
Eliyas736628/
Elisei735125/
Allais734813/
Eloisa733996/
Eliseo733626/
Elloso732838/
Elisee732228/
Illias732106/
Elisah731313/
Eliasa731126/
Eliosa731004/
Illies73972/
Eliasu73727/
Elleso73453/
Allois73399/
Euliss73281/
Elisey73267/
Ealias73254/
Aellos73233/
Elisii73229/
Elliza73225/
Elissa73194/
Elaisa73185/
Ellyas73172/
Alluis73141/
El-Isa73124/
Eliasy73110/
Ellysa73102/
Eliass73101/
Uillis7387/
Ullius7382/
Eloise7380/
Ollais7371/
Elisya7370/
Allisa7367/
Eluisa7365/
Eliesa7364/
Ollies7350/
Olliso7336/
Oeleis7335/
Oelius7335/
Ellsay7325/
Uollis7323/
Eleuis7319/
Elious7319/
Aelias7318/
Ehlies7317/
Ellzie7316/
Elisse7315/
Eliase7313/
Eliese7313/
Eliaas7312/
Owells7312/
Ullisi7311/
Eliyus7311/
Eliswa7310/
Eliias739/
Ellese739/
Ellyes738/
Ellyus738/
Eliyes738/
Oullis738/
Eiilis737/
Ealisi737/
Euells737/
Illios736/
Ellasi736/
Eliaso735/
Eliusa735/
Eleias735/
Ellyse735/
Elisaa734/
Elaise734/
Alliso734/
Aullis734/
Allios733/
Elwisa733/
Elewis733/
Elieas733/
Elisie733/
Eilias733/
Illisi733/
Ewalls732/
Eilisa732/
Elhais732/
Elisay732/
Ellsie732/
Elouis732/
Illais732/
Illiss733/
Ollias731/
Olluis731/
Illisa731/
Eaalis731/
Ealisa731/
Eallas731/
Ealwis731/
Elaisi731/
Elaius731/
Eleais731/
Eleiss731/
Eiliis731/
Eilios731/
Eliays731/
Eliess731/
Elisso731/
Eliuas731/
Eelisa731/
Eelles731/
Eellus731/
Ewills731/
Eylias731/
Ellass731/
Ellesy731/
Elleus731/
Ellizy731/
Ellsee731/
Ellseo731/
Elluzi731/
Eloisy731/
Eloyis731/
Eluias731/
Elwise731/
Eolisa731/
Eolles731/
Awells731/
Aallis731/
Aillis731/
Aielis731/
Ullise731/
Uelius731/
Ellissawy711/

Ellis Reference & Research

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Footnotes

    • 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
    • Variants: Surnames listed in the 'Ellis Variants' section are variant forms of the same root surname according to either sources listed on the page or Forebears
    • Similar: Surnames listed in the 'Similar Surnames' section are phonetically similar and may not have any relation to Ellis