butler

Last name origins & meanings:

  1. English and Irish: from a word that originally denoted a wine steward, usually the chief servant of a medieval household, from Norman French butuiller (Old French bouteillier, Latin buticularius, from buticula ‘bottle’). In the large households of royalty and the most powerful nobility, the title came to denote an officer of high rank and responsibility, only nominally concerned with the supply of wine, if at all.
  2. Anglicized form of French Boutilier.
  3. Jewish (from Poland and Ukraine): occupational name for a bottle maker, from Yiddish butl ‘bottle’ + the agent suffix -er.
  4. This name was brought independently to New England by many bearers from the 17th century onward. William Butler was one of the founders of Hartford, CT, (coming from Cambridge, MA, with Thomas Hooker) in 1635.
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