Welcome to Surname Studies!       BLUE text on this web site is always a clickable link.       This Surname Studies web site is dedicated to the memory of the late Philip Dance who created and assembled the content on his original web site Modern British Surnames: a resource guide.

Guide to the main sections of the Surname Studies web site:


An Introduction to the subject and to this web site, a Site Map, Latest News page and Contact page


Tools for mapping the distribution of surnames


Why surnames have died out. Why and how the spelling and pronunciation of names have changed.


Raw data to help you 'normalise' any figures that you derive from collecting numbers from a national source (or if not, then suggestions where to find this information). The frequency of individual surnames. Why are there so many surnames? Surname statistics at a local level; official statistics; a new and embryonic section on the statistics and distribution of UK forenames, probably post 1540; Considering high-frequency names as a class on their own (leading names).


Lists of societies and periodicals, subject bibliographies, and web site links


Teaching materials about names with a world-wide perspective. What is the oldest thing that you possess? Probably your surname? This section attempts to encourage study at a younger age and is actually is rapidly becoming a mini-sample of the whole site. Recommended start here


Towards a structure for the subject of personal names. For an advanced background of what has been achieved so far, and what remains to be done, then read Silvio Brendler's paper, "Is there a place for an English Surnames society?"