Definition of patronymic in English:



  • A name derived from the name of a father or ancestor, typically by the addition of a prefix or suffix, e.g., Johnson, O'Brien, Ivanovich.

    • ‘Iceland also upholds another Norse tradition - using patronymics rather than surnames.’
    • ‘They were always smart and neatly dressed, and always called each other - in public - by their first name and patronymic.’
    • ‘Documents dating between 1521 and 1524 attest that he had assumed the cognomen Lieto, the Italian version of Laetus, substituting this for his actual patronymic, Allegri.’
    • ‘I'm now 99% sure I have at least one of the patronymics wrong, so again, I solicit advice on them.’
    • ‘The memory trick of naming individuals by patronymics, or ‘sloinneadh’ in Gaelic, is the centuries-old system of placing an individual within an extended family system.’
    • ‘Probably more significant is the fact that Brown was one of the many neutral names adopted by clansmen who wanted to be rid of their politically incorrect Gaelic patronymics.’
    • ‘A Russian system of patronymics is still widely used.’
    • ‘Her patronymic should follow in the next two lines, consisting of her father's gentilicium and Greek cognomen.’
    • ‘In the novel we do not learn Luzhin's patronymic until the last sentences.’
    • ‘Xhosa speakers are patrilineal and have patronymic clans, but neither clans nor lineages have any ‘on the ground’ existence.’
    • ‘She replied addressing him Russian style using his patronymic.’
    • ‘Explaining patronymics to a four year old is always a difficult thing.’
    • ‘Thus, everyone has a patronymic, or father's name.’
    • ‘It is interesting that their usual surnames are all patronymics or matronymics, rather than the locatives that would be more likely were any of the four from immigrant families.’
    • ‘However, she later explains that Adriaen did not use the patronymic.’
    • ‘Addressing someone formally also entails using the person's full name and patronymic.’
    • ‘As the daughter's patronymic appears immediately after her name, so the same patronymic should also appear in column III immediately after her mother's name, here as husband.’
    • ‘Adult acquaintances and casual friends usually talk to each other using the first name combined with the patronymic.’
    • ‘Although a government decree in 1856 ended patronymics, some 60 percent of all present day Danish names end in ‘sen’ with Jensen and Nielsen being the most common.’
    family name, last name, patronymic
    View synonyms


  • Denoting or relating to a name derived from the name of a father or male ancestor.

    ‘the patronymic naming of children’


Early 17th century: via late Latin from Greek patrōnumikos, from patrōnumos, from patēr, patr- father + onuma name.