What is the origin of the last name Bean?

The last name Bean traces its origins to the Middle English word "bene," which in turn derived from the Old French word "bene" or "beene." The name originally referred to a person with fair or white hair, resembling the color of beans. Over time, variations of the name emerged across different regions and languages, including the variations such as Beane or Beene. The surname Bean is primarily found in English and Scottish lineages, where it has amassed a rich genealogical history intertwined with notable figures and familial legacies.

Countries of origin for the last name Bean

The last name Bean is of English origin. It is a surname derived from the Old English word “bēan,” meaning “bean” or “pea.” The use of plant names as surnames was common in medieval England, indicating a connection to agriculture or the cultivation of certain crops.

The surname Bean can be found in various forms, including Beane, Been, and Bene. Variations in spelling were common in earlier times due to the lack of standardized spelling rules. It is estimated that there are several thousand individuals with the last name Bean in the United States today.

The Bean surname can be traced back to early medieval England, where it was first recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086. The book was a survey of England and Wales, commissioned by William the Conqueror, which recorded land ownership and other details for tax purposes. This early mention suggests that the Bean family has a long-standing presence in England.

One possible etymology of the name Bean may be that it was originally a nickname. Surnames derived from nicknames were common in medieval times and often described a characteristic or trait of the individual. In this case, the nickname might have referred to someone who cultivated beans or had some association with the crop.

Another possibility is that the last name Bean could be derived from a topographical or locational feature. In old English, “bēan” can also mean “hillock” or “mound.” Thus, individuals with this surname might have lived near a hillock or mound, leading to the adoption of Bean as their last name.

The distribution of the Bean surname in the United States shows concentrations in specific regions. According to census records, the highest frequency of the Bean surname can be found in the southern states, particularly in Alabama, Mississippi, and Arkansas. This suggests that the Bean family might have had significant migrations or settlements in these areas.

Bean is not a particularly common surname globally, but variants of the name can be found in other countries. For example, in Ireland, the surname Beane is more prevalent, and it is believed to have separate origins from the English Bean surname. Further research and analysis would be required to determine the specific connections and variations of the Bean surname across different countries.

In conclusion, the last name Bean has English origins and is derived from the Old English word “bēan” meaning “bean” or “pea.” It could have originated as a nickname or related to a topographical feature. The Bean surname has a long history and can be found in various forms. Its distribution in the United States suggests regional concentrations, particularly in the southern states. However, further research is required to fully understand the origins and variations of the surname both within the United States and globally.

Interesting facts about the last name Bean

  • The surname Bean is of English and Scottish origin.
  • It is derived from the Old English word “bēan,” which means “bean” or “legume.”
  • The name may have originally been a nickname for a bean grower or seller.
  • In some cases, Bean could also refer to someone with a bean-shaped birthmark or a person with a legume-like appearance.
  • The Bean surname can be traced back to medieval times, with records dating as far back as the 13th century.
  • Historically, the Bean family is associated with the Scottish Highlands and the border regions between England and Scotland.
  • In the United States, the Bean name is particularly common in New England, due to the early settlement of Scottish and English immigrants in the region.
  • The surname has several variants and spelling variations, including Beane, Been, Bane, Beyne, and Bene.
  • Prominent individuals with the Bean surname include journalist and author Alan Bean, who was the fourth person to walk on the moon, and American Civil War soldier and Medal of Honor recipient William W. Bean.
  • The Bean surname is ranked 641st in terms of frequency in the United States, with approximately 68,000 individuals bearing the name.

Name Rank


There are around 37571 people with the last name Bean in the US

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