Last name origins & meanings:

  1. German: from a short form of the female personal name Mechthild, composed of Germanic maht ‘might’, ‘strength’ + hild ‘strife’, ‘battle’.
  2. German and Jewish (Ashkenazic): habitational name from Metz in Lorraine, which took its name from a Gaulish tribe, the Mediomatrici; in the name of the place this became abbreviated to Mettis, hence the modern name.
  3. German: from Mätz, a short form of the personal name Matthias (see Matthew).
  4. North German: metonymic occupational name for a cutler, from Middle Low German messet, metset ‘knife’, ‘dagger’ or Middle High German metz(e) ‘knife’. Compare Messer 1. This name is also established in Poland.
  5. Christian Metz, the founder of the Amana colonies in IA, was born in Neuwied, Prussia, in 1794. His group arrived in NY in 1842 and proceeded to the Midwest in 1855, where they were able to establish an experimental life style that was more successful than most other Utopian communal religious settlements of the time.
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