Last name origins & meanings:

  1. Polish, Slovak (Gál), and Slovenian: from a personal name, Latin Gallus (see Gall), which was widespread in Europe in the Middle Ages. There are many pet forms and other derivatives of this personal name; the American surname could also be a shortening of any of them. See also Gall.
  2. Hungarian (Gál): from the ecclesiastical name Gál, a short form of Gál(l)os, from Latin Gallus (see Gall).
  3. French: from the personal name Gallus (see 1), the name of a 6th-century bishop of Clermont.
  4. French: habitational name for someone from either of two places named Saint Gal, in Lozère and Puy-de-Dôme, or from Saint Jal in Corrèze.
  5. French: nickname from southern French gal ‘rooster’ (Old French jal, Latin gallus). As a French name, it appears to have been brought to the U.S. by Swiss bearers.
  6. Jewish (Israeli): ornamental name from Hebrew gal ‘wave’.
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