What is the origin of the last name Dickey?

The last name DICKEY has Scottish origins and is derived from the medieval personal name Dick, a diminutive form of Richard. The surname became established in various parts of Scotland, with the spelling variations including Dickey, Dicke, and Dicke. Over time, it spread to other English-speaking countries, particularly the United States, through emigration and colonization.

Countries of origin for the last name Dickey


Dickey is a last name of Scottish origin, derived from the medieval given name Richard, which means “strong ruler” or “brave leader.” It is a patronymic surname, indicating that it was originally used to identify the descendants of a man named Richard. Dickey is an anglicized form of the Gaelic surname MacDhìghaill, meaning “son of the foreigner” or “son of the stranger.”

The surname Dickey has multiple spelling variations, including Dickie, Dicky, and even Diggie. These variations can be attributed to the evolution of spelling conventions over time, as well as regional dialects and accents.

Records show that the name Dickey has been in use since at least the 14th century, predominantly in Scotland. It later spread to other English-speaking countries, including Ireland, England, and the United States.

In Scotland, the surname is associated with families from various areas, such as Ayrshire, Lanarkshire, and Renfrewshire. The Dickey surname was also recorded in County Derry, Northern Ireland, particularly in the 17th and 18th centuries.

Migration to the United States played a significant role in the spread of the Dickey surname. Many individuals bearing the name arrived in America during the 18th and 19th centuries, seeking new opportunities and a fresh start. Some settled in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Virginia, while others headed south and west to states like Georgia, Tennessee, and Texas.

The Dickey surname has been associated with various professions over the years. It is not uncommon to find individuals with the last name Dickey working as farmers, laborers, merchants, or military personnel. The surname has also produced notable figures in different fields, including politics, literature, and entertainment.

While the meaning and historical usage of the Dickey surname are well-documented, there are still aspects that remain uncertain. Further research and exploration may shed light on additional details, uncovering hidden stories and connections. The study of genealogy and name etymology continues to provide a fascinating glimpse into our ancestral roots and the rich tapestry of human history.

Interesting facts about the last name Dickey

  • The surname Dickey is derived from the medieval personal name “Richard,” which originated from the Old Germanic elements “ric” meaning “ruler” and “hard” meaning “brave” or “strong.”
  • Dickey is a common surname in both Scotland and Ireland, with significant variations in spelling such as Dickie, Dicky, and Dikie.
  • The name Dickey can be traced back to the medieval times, and it is believed to have been introduced to Scotland by the Norman invaders.
  • Some sources suggest that the Dickey surname may have originated from the Old Norse personal name “Díki,” which means “ditch” or “ravine.” However, this etymology is debated among scholars.
  • Throughout history, individuals with the surname Dickey have been associated with various professions and occupations, including farming, military service, politics, and literature.
  • Notable individuals with the surname Dickey include James Dickey, an American poet and novelist known for his work “Deliverance,” and Bill Dickey, a Hall of Fame baseball player who was a key member of the New York Yankees during the 1920s and 1930s.
  • The Dickey surname has spread worldwide due to emigration from Scotland and Ireland. Today, it can be found in countries such as the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, among others.

Name Rank


There are around 23320 people with the last name Dickey in the US

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