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Last name origins & meanings:

  1. Indian (northern and southern states): Hindu name from Sanskrit rāma ‘pleasing’, ‘charming’, name of an incarnation of Vishnu. In the northern states, it probably evolved into a family name from use as the final element of a compound personal names such as Atmaram (with Sanskrit ātmā ‘soul’) or Sitaram (with Sita, the name of Rama’s wife). In South India it is used only as a male given name, but has come to be used as a family name in the U.S. among people from South India. Among Tamil and Malayalam speakers who have migrated from their home states, it is a variant of Raman.
  2. Dutch and English: from Middle Low German ram, Middle English ram ‘ram’, either in the sense ‘male sheep’ or in the sense ‘battering ram’ or ‘pile driver’.
  3. Swedish: ornamental name from a place name element, either from Old Norse hrafn ‘raven’ (Swedish ramm) or from dialect ramm ‘water meadow’.
  4. Jewish (Israeli): ornamental name from Hebrew ram ‘lofty’.
  5. Jewish (eastern Ashkenazic): acronymic name of uncertain etymology.
  6. Southern French: topographic name meaning ‘branch’ and denoting someone who lived in a leafy wooded area.
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