HUNT Surname Meaning and Origin

Crossbow Hunter in Camouflage at Sunset
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As it sounds, the Hunt surname is generally considered to be an occupational name for a hunter, from the Old English hunta, meaning "to hunt." It's also possible that the Hunt surname is an mis-translation of the Irish surname Ó Fiaich (due to confusion with fiach, the modern spelling of fiadhach, meaning "to hunt"), or an Anglicized spelling of the German surname Hundt.

Surname Origin: English

Alternate Surname Spellings: HUNTER, HUNTAR, HUNTE, HUNTA, HUNTT, HUNDT

Where in the World is the HUNT Surname Found?

According to Forebears, the Hunt surname is most prevalent in the United States, where over 172,000 people bear the name. It is more common based on rank in the nation, however, in New Zealand (ranked 78th), Wales (84th) and England (89th). Historical data from the 1881 census in England shows the surname Hunt was most common in Wiltshire (11th most common surname), Dorset (12th), Berkshire (17th), Somerset and Oxfordshire (23rd), Hampshire (24th) and Leicestershire (25th).

WorldNames PublicProfiler identifies the Hunt surname as being especially common in the United Kingdom, followed by Australia and New Zealand. Within the UK it is most common in southern England, especially the counties of Dorset, Somerset, Wiltshire, Oxfordshire, Warwickshire, Monmouthshire and Derbyshire.

Famous People with the Last Name HUNT

  • Linda Hunt - American actress, born Lydia Susanna Hunter
  • Helen Hunt - American actress
  • James Hunt - British race car driver famous in the 1970s
  • E. Howard Hunt - former CIA agent, famous for helping to organize the Watergate breakin
  • Alfred Hunt - American steel magnate
  • Henry Hunt - British radical speaker and politician
  • Bonnie Hunt - American actress
  • Leigh Hunt - English author and critic
  • William Morris Hunt - American painter

Genealogy Resources for the Surname HUNT

How to Research English Ancestors
Trace your British roots back to England and beyond with the steps outlined in this English genealogy guide. Learn how to locate your ancestor's county and/or parish in England, plus how to access vital records, census records and parish records.

The HUNT DNA Website
Over 180 individuals with the Hunt surname and variants such as Hunte, Hunta, Huntt, Hundt, etc. have tested their Y-DNA and joined this project to help identify various Hunt families.

Hunt Family Crest - It's Not What You Think
Contrary to what you may hear, there is no such thing as a Hunt family crest or coat of arms for the Hunt surname. Coats of arms are granted to individuals, not families, and may rightfully be used only by the uninterrupted male line descendants of the person to whom the coat of arms was originally granted.

FamilySearch - HUNT Genealogy
Explore over 4 million historical records and lineage-linked family trees posted for the Hunt surname and its variations on the free FamilySearch website, hosted by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

HUNT Surname & Family Mailing Lists
RootsWeb hosts a free mailing lists for researchers of the Hunt surname. - HUNT Genealogy & Family History
Explore free databases and genealogy links for the last name Hunt.

The Hunt Genealogy and Family Tree Page
Browse genealogy records and links to genealogical and historical records for individuals with the popular last name Hunt from the website of Genealogy Today.

References: Surname Meanings & Origins

Cottle, Basil. Penguin Dictionary of Surnames. Baltimore, MD: Penguin Books, 1967.

Dorward, David. Scottish Surnames. Collins Celtic (Pocket edition), 1998.

Fucilla, Joseph. Our Italian Surnames. Genealogical Publishing Company, 2003.

Hanks, Patrick and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford University Press, 1989.

Hanks, Patrick. Dictionary of American Family Names. Oxford University Press, 2003.

Reaney, P.H. A Dictionary of English Surnames. Oxford University Press, 1997.

Smith, Elsdon C. American Surnames. Genealogical Publishing Company, 1997.


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Your Citation
Powell, Kimberly. "HUNT Surname Meaning and Origin." ThoughtCo, Aug. 27, 2020, Powell, Kimberly. (2020, August 27). HUNT Surname Meaning and Origin. Retrieved from Powell, Kimberly. "HUNT Surname Meaning and Origin." ThoughtCo. (accessed May 28, 2023).