Family name origins & meanings
- English : occupational name for a fisherman, Middle English fischer. The name has also been used in Ireland as a loose equivalent of Braden. As an American family name, this has absorbed cognates and names of similar meaning from many other European languages, including German Fischer, Dutch Visser, Hungarian Halász, Italian Pescatore, Polish Rybarz, etc.
- In a few cases, the English name may in fact be a topographic name for someone who lived near a fish weir on a river, from the Old English term fisc-gear ‘fish weir’.
- Jewish (Ashkenazic) : occupational name for a fisherman, Yiddish fisher, German Fischer.
- Irish : translation of Gaelic Ó Bradáin ‘descendant of Bradán’, a personal name meaning ‘salmon’. See Braden.
- Mistranslation of French Poissant, meaning ‘powerful’, but understood as poisson ‘fish’ (see Poisson), and assimilated to the more frequent English name.