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Updated June 9, 2019

Family name origins & meanings

  • English : nickname from the animal, Middle English catte ‘cat’. The word is found in similar forms in most European languages from very early times (e.g. Gaelic cath, Slavic kotu). Domestic cats were unknown in Europe in classical times, when weasels fulfilled many of their functions, for example in hunting rodents. They seem to have come from Egypt, where they were regarded as sacred animals.
  • English : from a medieval female personal name, a short form of Catherine.
  • Variant spelling of German and Dutch Katt.

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