LONDON-L ArchivesArchiver > LONDON > 2001-10 > 1003954770
From: Eve McLaughlin <>
Subject: Re: [Lon] Two Surnames mean???
Date: Wed, 24 Oct 2001 21:19:30 +0100
In message <018701c159e9$556f63e0$>, "Gord H."
>I have: "James HARDWICK STEVENS" b. 1896.
>I was wondering if the Hardwick portion of the name would denote a "missing"
>father? Does anyone have any ideas?
The most frequent reason for a name incorporating a double surname is
illegitimacy. The idea is partly to label the child, partly so that if
the parents subsequenbtly marry, the child can drop the final surname
and use the other two.
So if there is a James Hardwick around, he probably fathered Miss
However, there are alternative usages.
If Mr Stevens married 'above' himself in rank or money, then they would
perpetuate the maternal surname - and James Hardwick might be Grandpa.
This was a popular use in Yorkshire, for example/
If there was a potential inheritance from a childless uncle, he might
be induced to be godfather and the child named after him
Occasionally, people perpetuated the name of their place of origin.
There are several Hardwicks. And it sounds better as a name than
Cleobury Mortimer used as a forename by an immigrant to london from
Shropshire in the later C18.
Author of the McLaughlin Guides for family historians
Secretary Bucks Genealogical Society
|Re: [Lon] Two Surnames mean??? by Eve McLaughlin <>|