Meaning and Origin of: Rye

Family name origins & meanings

  • English : topographic name for someone who lived on an island or patch of firm ground surrounded by fens, from a misdivision of the Middle English phrase atter ye ‘at the island’ (from Old English ēg, īeg ‘island’).
  • English : topographic name for someone who lived near a river or stream, from a misdivision of the Middle English phrase atter eye ‘at the river’ (from Old English ēa ‘river’).
  • English : topographic name for someone living at a place where rye (Old English ryge) was grown, or perhaps a metonymic occupational name for someone who grew or sold it.
  • Norwegian : habitational name from a farmstead so named, most of them from Old Norse rjóðr ‘clearing in a forest’, but others from ry ‘dry place with stones’.
  • Danish : habitational name from a place called Rye.