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Meaning and Origin of: Burke

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First name origins & meanings:

  • German : Castle

First name variations

Last name origin & meaning:

  • Irish (of Anglo-Norman origin) : habitational name from Burgh in Suffolk, England. This is named with Old English burh ‘fortification’, ‘fortified manor’.
  • Norwegian : Americanized form of Børke, a habitational name from any of eight farms in southeastern Norway, named with Old Norse birki ‘birch wood’.
  • German : variant of Burk.
  • Burke owes its importance as an Irish surname to William FitzAdelm de Burgo, a Norman knight whose family held lands at Burgh in Suffolk, from which they took their name. He took part in Henry II’s expedition to Ireland in 1171 and received the earldom of Ulster, along with large tracts of land in Connacht. His descendants quickly associated themselves with the native population, Gaelicizing their name as de Búrca.

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