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Updated June 9, 2019

Family name origins & meanings

  • French (Besançon) : habitational name from Besançon in Doubs, which is probably named with a Celtiberian element ves ‘mountain’ + the suffix -unt, with a further Latin suffix -io (genitive -ionis). In folk etymology there has been some association with Old French bison, the (European) bison, which appears in the arms of the city.
  • A Prélas or Prélat with the secondary surname Besançon was documented in Quebec city in 1759.

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