Family name origins & meanings
- German : of uncertain origin; perhaps a topographic name from a reduced form of Middle High German gehage ‘hedge’, ‘fence’, a term denoting an enclosed settlement in otherwise wild terrain; alternatively, it may be from a southern dialect word Kage ‘cabbage stalk’ and hence a metonymic occupational name for a cabbage grower. Cabbage was an important winter staple until recent times and was grown by some farmers mostly for seed. A third possible source is Middle Low German koge, kage, a term denoting a contagious (lung?) disease.