What is the origin of the last name Bartlett?

The last name Bartlett is of English origin and has two possible sources. Firstly, it could be derived from the medieval personal name "Bartel" or "Bartholomew," meaning "son of Bartholomew," denoting a familial relationship. Alternatively, it may have originated as a locational surname, derived from the Middle English word "bartel," meaning "barley," and "lēah," meaning "wood" or "clearing," signifying a person who resided near a barley field or clearing.

Countries of origin for the last name Bartlett

The last name Bartlett originated as an English surname, and it is primarily associated with England and the United States. It is a patronymic surname, derived from the given name Bartholomew, meaning “son of Bartholomew.” The popularity of the name Bartholomew in England during the medieval period led to the development of various surnames, including Bartlett.

One of the earliest recorded instances of the Bartlett surname can be found in the “Hundred Rolls of Landowners” in England from 1273. The surname gradually gained prominence over the centuries and became more widespread. The Bartlett family eventually migrated to the United States, where the name continued to flourish.

In terms of etymology, the given name Bartholomew is of Aramaic origin, derived from the Hebrew name “Bar-Talmay,” meaning “son of Tolmai.” Bartholomew was one of the twelve apostles of Jesus, mentioned in the New Testament of the Bible. The name Bartlett, as a patronymic, signifies a familial connection to Bartholomew, symbolizing descent from someone who bore this biblical name.

Bartlett is a relatively common surname in both England and the United States. According to the 2010 United States Census, Bartlett ranked 702nd among all surnames in America, with an estimated 61,611 individuals carrying this name. Its prevalence is particularly notable in the states of Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Vermont.

Over the years, numerous individuals bearing the surname Bartlett have achieved distinction in various fields. Notable figures include Josiah Bartlett, who was a signer of the United States Declaration of Independence and the first chief executive of New Hampshire; John Bartlett, the creator of “Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations,” a renowned collection of quotations; and Francis Bartlett, a prominent horticulturist whose work contributed significantly to ornamental gardening in America.

While the meaning and historical significance of the Bartlett surname are well-documented, it is important to recognize the limitations of available research. Last names are intricate, multifaceted entities, shaped by countless factors that may not always be accessible through historical records. The Bartlett surname, like many others, represents a rich tapestry of lineage and heritage with countless untold stories awaiting discovery.

Interesting facts about the last name Bartlett

  • The surname Bartlett is of English origin.
  • It is derived from the medieval personal name “Bartolf” or “Berhtolf,” which combines the elements “berht,” meaning bright or famous, and “wolf,” meaning wolf.
  • Bartlett is a patronymic surname, indicating that it was originally derived from the name of a male ancestor, often the father or grandfather of the person.
  • The surname Bartlett dates back to at least the 13th century in England.
  • Variant spellings of Bartlett include Bartlet, Bartlette, Bartletts, and Bartelot.
  • The Bartlett family name has been recorded in various regions of England, including Yorkshire, Essex, Norfolk, and Suffolk.
  • One notable figure with the surname Bartlett is John Russell Bartlett (1805-1886), an American linguist, historian, and bibliographer who served as the Secretary of State of Rhode Island.
  • Bartlett is a relatively common surname in English-speaking countries, with significant numbers of individuals bearing the name found in the United States, England, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia, among others.
  • The Bartlett pear, one of the most popular cultivars of pears, is named after the Massachusetts farmer Enoch Bartlett, who first discovered the variety in the early 19th century.
  • The Bartlett Hall at Cornell University in New York is named after Ezra Cornell’s mother, Eunice Bartlett Cornell.

Name Rank


There are around 43648 people with the last name Bartlett in the US

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