campbell

Last name origins & meanings:

  1. Scottish: nickname from Gaelic cam ‘crooked’, ‘bent’ + beul ‘mouth’. The surname was often represented in Latin documents as de bello campo ‘of the fair field’, which led to the name sometimes being ‘translated’ into Anglo-Norman French as Beauchamp.
  2. In New England documents, Campbell sometimes occurs as a representation of the French name Hamel.
  3. The founder of the clan Campbell (and the bearer of the nickname) was Gillespie Ó Duibhne, who lived at the beginning of the 13th century. He married Eva Ó Duibhne, heiress of Lochow, and from them descended a long line of Lairds of Lochow and immensely powerful Scottish aristocrats, including the dukes of Argyll. For centuries they wielded enormous power in Scotland. As with many Highland Scottish clan names, the surname was adopted not merely by descendants but also retainers of the original clan founders.
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