What is the origin of the last name Cox?

The last name Cox originated from the Old English personal name "Cocc," a byname meaning "the cook," which later evolved into a surname. It is derived from the Middle English word "cok," and it signified someone who either worked as a cook or had traits associated with a cook, such as being lively or active. The surname Cox has been found in various regions of England, dating back to medieval times, and it continues to be a widely spread and common surname worldwide today.

Countries of origin for the last name Cox

The last name Cox has its origins in English and Scottish history. It is classified as a patronymic surname, meaning that it is derived from the first name of an ancestor. In the case of Cox, the name is believed to have originated from the medieval given name “Cock” or “Cocke,” which itself is a diminutive form of the name “Christopher.”

One of the earliest recorded instances of the Cox surname can be found in the 12th century in England. It is believed that the surname was first used in the county of Cornwall and eventually spread to other parts of England and Scotland. Over time, the surname Cox has seen various spelling variations, including Cocke, Cocks, and Coxe.

Historically, the name Cox was associated with occupation and profession. In medieval times, it was common for people to be given surnames that reflected their occupation or trade. The name Cox, in this context, is believed to have referred to a person who worked as a “cocksman” or “cogger.” A cocksman was a person who supervised or operated a cock-fighting pit or an establishment where gambling on cockfights took place.

The Cox surname has experienced significant migration and settlement patterns throughout history. In the United States, the surname can be traced back to early settlers from England and Scotland. As the country expanded westward, many Cox families migrated along with it, establishing themselves in various states. Today, the surname Cox is widespread across the United States and can be found in significant numbers in states such as Texas, California, and North Carolina.

The popularity of the Cox surname can be attributed, in part, to its simplicity and easy pronunciation. Additionally, the surname has retained its original form over the centuries, with minimal variations in spelling. This consistency has contributed to its continued use and recognition as a distinct surname.

Despite the abundance of information available about the Cox surname, there are still aspects that warrant further research and exploration. For example, the specific reasons behind the early migration of Cox families to the United States and the factors that influenced their choice of settlement locations remain areas of intrigue.

Furthermore, delving deeper into the genealogical connections of individuals with the Cox surname could unveil fascinating family histories and ancestral lineages. Tracing the Cox surname back to its earliest origins and connecting it with specific individuals or historical events would undoubtedly shed more light on the significance of this name in the larger tapestry of human history.

Interesting facts about the last name Cox

  • The surname Cox is of English origin.
  • It is derived from the Old English personal name “Cocc,” meaning “rooster” or “cock.” The name was given as a nickname to someone with fancied resemblance to a rooster.
  • The surname Cox is recorded in various spellings including Cox, Coxe, Cockes, Cocks, and others.
  • Cox is a very common surname in English-speaking countries, particularly in the United Kingdom, the United States, and Australia.
  • The earliest known recorded instance of the surname Cox dates back to the 12th century.
  • In the Middle Ages, the Cox family was associated with the occupation of a “coke,” a term for a person who tends to a charcoal-burning kiln or who takes care of other related activities.
  • The name Cox has various notable historical figures associated with it, including Sir Richard Cox, an English lawyer and politician in the 16th century, and James Middleton Cox, an American politician and newspaper publisher who was the Democratic Party’s nominee for President in 1920.
  • As of 2020, there were approximately 172,000 people with the surname Cox in the United States, making it the 88th most common surname in the country.

Name Rank


There are around 261231 people with the last name Cox in the US

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