miles

Last name origins & meanings:

  1. English (of Norman origin): via Old French from the Germanic personal name Milo, of unknown etymology. The name was introduced to England by the Normans in the form Miles (oblique case Milon). In English documents of the Middle Ages the name sometimes appears in the Latinized form Milo (genitive Milonis), although the normal Middle English form was Mile, so the final -s must usually represent the possessive ending, i.e. ‘son or servant of Mile’.
  2. English: patronymic from the medieval personal name Mihel, an Old French contracted form of Michael.
  3. English: occupational name for a servant or retainer, from Latin miles ‘soldier’, sometimes used as a technical term in this sense in medieval documents.
  4. Irish (County Mayo): when not the same as 1 or 3, an Anglicized form of Gaelic Ó Maolmhuire, Myles being used as the English equivalent of the Gaelic personal name Maol Muire (see Mullery).
  5. Jewish (eastern Ashkenazic): unexplained.
  6. Dutch: variant of Miels, a variant of Miele 3.
  7. John Miles or Myles (c.1621–83), born probably in Herefordshire, England, was a pioneer American Baptist minister who emigrated to New England in 1662 and had a pastorate in Swansea, MA. Many of his descendants spell their name Myles.
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