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family name

the hereditary surname of a family.
a given name frequently used in a family.
Origin of family name
First recorded in 1690-1700 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for family name
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Her fancy for him passed without her ever having asked his family name.

    A Zola Dictionary J. G. Patterson
  • It is the drollest mode of assuming a family name I ever heard of.

    The Bramleighs Of Bishop's Folly Charles James Lever
  • This was her family name; she was called Tintoretta because her father had been a dyer.

    The Memoires of Casanova, Complete Jacques Casanova de Seingalt
  • I had now borne it for two years, but I often subjoined to it my family name.

    The Memoires of Casanova, Complete Jacques Casanova de Seingalt
  • Between the two is the family name, written in Augsburg fashion, Holbain.

    Holbein Beatrice Fortescue
British Dictionary definitions for family name

family name

a surname, esp when regarded as representing the family honour
a first or middle name frequently used in a family, often originally a surname
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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