111 Portuguese Last Names With Meanings And History

Portuguese names have an interesting story and culture to them.
Share
Tweet

Are you looking for a Portuguese last name?

One that not only encapsulates its origin but also accentuates its beauty and diversity? Or, one that perhaps brings to the fore the family history and tradition?

The Portuguese Empire is believed to be among the first global and enduring empires ever! Even today, it's not uncommon that people from India and various other parts of Asia, North and South America, Africa have last names which trace back to Portugal. Usually entailing one or two given names, and a few family names as a surname, the Portuguese aren't too rigid with their naming system. The Portugal law mandates that every child born to a family be bestowed with at least one given name and one family name from either parent. Usually, the maternal surname precedes the paternal surname. While the law officially establishes that no person can have more than two given names and four surnames, the law isn't strictly enforced, so it’s relatively common for people to have more than four surnames.

The Portuguese naming system is unique. Portuguese surnames are either patronymic, locative, or have a religious origin. The particle ‘de’ meaning ‘of' or 'from’ is a pervasive feature of Portuguese surnames. They are written in the lower case. Unlike Italian surnames, they are not considered to be a part of the name itself, i.e., Sousa is not different from D’sousa. Therefore, alphabetically, both would be recorded under the alphabet ‘S.’ Another common conjunction observed in Portuguese surnames is ‘e’ meaning ‘and,’ for instance, Maria Costa e Silva. The difference between the use of the participle ‘de’ in its various forms, and conjunction ‘e’, is that the former should not be included in the shortened version of one’s name, but the latter must. For instance, while Luiz Pereira da Silva should be referred to as Mr Silva, Maria Costa e Silva will become Ms Costa e Silva.

In this article, we will list over 100 Portuguese Names with meanings, divided into common Portuguese last names, some popular Portuguese last names, last names made famous by renowned celebrities, and others that are categorized into patronymic and toponymic last names.

Read on for Portuguese last names! And for more last name inspiration, take a look at Hawaiian Last Names and African Last Names.

Most Common Portuguese Last Names

Below we have listed the most commonly bestowed last names that hold a rich cultural significance, and are commonly found in Portugal and worldwide as a person's last name, even today. Here is a list of the most common Portuguese last names.

1. Carvalho means "Oak."

2. Costa (Origin Latin) means "Rib".

3. D’Sousa often refers to a person from several locales named Sousa.

4. Fernandez / Fernandes means "Son of Fernando".

5. Gomes is an old Galician surname meaning "Man".

6. Gonçalves means "Son of Gonçalo".

7. Martins means "Of Mars".

8. Marques means "Son of Marcos".

9. Oliveira means "Of the Olive Tree".

10. Ribeiro is a common Galician surname, which in Portuguese means "Small creek".

11. Rodrigues means "Famous Power".

12. Silva derived from Latin, means "Forest".

13. Souza often refers to a person from any of the various places named Sousa.

Popular Portuguese Names

Portugal is a country with a rich cultural heritage and gorgeous landscapes and cities.

Below is a list that comprises other Portuguese surnames that are perhaps less common in comparison to the ones mentioned above, but are nevertheless extremely popular in Portugal, as well as the former Portuguese colonies.

14. Abreu a name common for Sephardi Jews which often refers to anyone living in or from Abreu's locale in Minho province of Portugal.

15. Afonso, (Portuguese origin) is the Portuguese version of Alfonso, meaning "Noble and ready".

16. Albuquerque means "White Oak".

17. Almada often refers to a person from Almada's town and in Arabic means "Ore mine".

18. Alto means "Tall".

19. Amaral means "From Amaral" / a person who lived on a grape plantation.

20. Amorim often refers to a person from said location in Portugal.

21. Araujo is derived from the autonomous region in Galicia.

22. Barbosa is a southwestern Galician surname.

23. Barreto means "Hatmaker".

24. Braga means "From Braga", or "of the Bracari tribe".

25. Candido means "Innocent".

26. Carreira means "Carter".

27. Cavaco means "Log".

28. Esteves means "Son of Stephen".

29. Fonseca means "Dry well".

30. Guerra means "War".

31. Henriques means "Son of Henry".

32. Luz means "Light".

33. Madeira means "Wood" or "timber", and often refers to someone who is a carpenter.

34. Magro means "Thin" or "lean".

35. Moniz means "Son of Munio".

36. Nazario often refers to someone from Nazareth.

37. Noronha means often refers to a person initially from Noreña.

38. Pacheco means "Noble one".

39. Pereria means "Noble Tree".

40. Pinto means "Dark in color".

41. Ribeiro means "small creek or by the river".

42. Santos, a popular Christian surname that means "Saint".

43. Queiros means "Stronger" or "stone".

Portuguese Last Names Popularized By Renowned Personalities

Recognizable surnames are not commonly found but are popular because of renowned Portuguese celebrities, and therefore are well-known across the globe. While almost all the last names mentioned below have existed for a long time, the chances are that you have probably heard of them because of the said famous personality, especially if you aren't too well-versed with Portuguese culture. Take a look at the names below.

44. Andresen of Sophia de Mello Breyner Andresen (renowned poet-writer) means "Son of Andreas".

45. Camões of Luis Vaz de Camões (legendary poet) is believed to come from the bird "Camão" or "Castle of Camoens".

46. Ferreira of Eusébio da Silva Ferreira (legendary Portuguese footballer) means "Blacksmith".

47. Figo of Luis Figo (footballer) means "Fig".

48. Furtado of Nelly Furtado (singer) means "illegitimate".

49. Gama of Vasco De Gama means "Deer" or "Doe".

50. Guterres, (German origin) of António Guterres (ex-PM of Portugal) means 'Son of Gutierre.'

51. Lopes of Fatima Lopes (up and coming fashion designer) means "Wolf".

52. Mendes of Shawn Mendes (singer) means "Son of Mendo".

53. Mourinho of Jose Mourinho (football coach) means "Dishwasher".

54. Pessoa of Fernando Pessoa (writer) means "person".

55. Rego of Paula Rego (painter) means 'Port,' often connoting to someone who lived at a place called so.

56. Ronaldo (Origin Florence, Italy) of Cristiano Ronaldo means "Counsel".

57. Salazar of Antonio de Oliveira Salazar (100th PM of Portugal) means "Old Hall".

58. Sampaio of Sara Sampaio (supermodel) often refers to a person from various places named Sampaio.

59. Veloso of Rui Veloso (musician) means "hairy".

Patronymic Portuguese Surnames

Patronymic surnames are derived from the father's first name, most commonly found by replacing the name's final vowel with 'ez', which scholars believe is derived from the Latin genitive form.

60. Allberto means "Noble and bright".

61. Allvariz, Germanic origin) means "True".

62. Andre, (Greek origin) means "Man or warrior".

63. Ayres, (Old Norse origin) means "Shingle beach".

64. Bernaldez, (German origin) means "Brave or strong or hardy".

65. Borjes / Borges means "Of the town" or "bourgeois".

66. Bras, (Dutch/North German, Old French origin) means "Arm".

67. Cortês means "Courteous" or "polite".

68. Diaz / Dias / Diogo means "Son of Diego".

69. Dinis means followers of the "God of Wine - Dionysius".

70. Dominguez, (Spanish origin) means "Son of Dominic".

71. Duarte means "Wealthy Guardian".

72. Lianor means "The other one" or "Foreign".

73. Lourenço, (Latin origin) derived from the ancient Roman city of Laurentem.

74. Manoel (Hebrew origin) means "God is with us".

75. Ortiz / Ortis, (Latin origin) means "Fortunate" or "Brave, Strong".

76. Pirez / Peres / Perez means "Son of Pedro".

77. Ramires, (Spanish origin) means "Son of Ramiro".

78. Ruy, (Spanish/ Dutch origin) means "Famous or powerful".

79. Simões / Simoa means "Son of Simão".

80. Tome when translated means "take".

81. Vasquez (Pre-Roman Latin origin) means "Son of Vasco".

Locative And Toponymic Portuguese Surnames

When the person's last name depends on their region of origin, it falls under the category of 'locative or toponymic surname.' Preceding all the names below, one will find the particle 'de' in its various forms, since they're given to people 'of' or 'from' that particular place, region, or location of the family home.

82. Abrantes is named after a Portuguese town.

83. Allcaçova is named after "A fort/ tower".

84. Allgarve is named after a kingdom in Portugal.

85. Alter is named after a Portuguese town, Alter does cham.

86. Amoreyra name means "Of the mulberry tree".

87. Armas translated means "Of arms".

88. Braga is named after a city in Portugal.

89. Bulhão translated means "A spring".

90. Carvalhal translated means "A grove or forest of oaks".

91. Casal means "A land", "ground", "farm".

92. Chaves is named after a Portuguese town.

93. Demar means "Beautiful" in Portuguese.

94. Espanha name means "Spain".

95. Estremoz is named after a Portugal town, known for its earthenware.

96. Evora is named after a Portuguese city.

97. Faro is named after a city in the Algarves.

98. Fonte means "Fountain".

99. Galegos means "Galicia".

100. Lamego is named after a Portuguese city and bishopric.

101. Mata translated means "A shrub".

102. Monte means "Mountain".

103. Orta name means "Garden"

104. Praça means "Market-place".

105. Quintal means "Little house garden".

106. Rio means "River"

107. Tomar is named after a Portuguese town.

108. Tores Vedras is named after a town in Portugal.

109. Valle means "Valley".

110. Veiga / Veigua / Veyga, a beautiful name means "Large open plain or field".

111. The name Vila means "Town".

Kidadl has lots of great names articles to inspire you. If you liked our suggestions for Portuguese Last Names then why not take a look at French Canadian Last Names, or for something different take a look at Peruvian Last Names.

Disclaimer

Disclaimer

At Kidadl we pride ourselves on offering families original ideas to make the most of time spent together at home or out and about, wherever you are in the world. We strive to recommend the very best things that are suggested by our community and are things we would do ourselves - our aim is to be the trusted friend to parents.

We try our very best, but cannot guarantee perfection. We will always aim to give you accurate information at the date of publication - however, information does change, so it’s important you do your own research, double-check and make the decision that is right for your family.

Kidadl provides inspiration to entertain and educate your children. We recognise that not all activities and ideas are appropriate and suitable for all children and families or in all circumstances. Our recommended activities are based on age but these are a guide. We recommend that these ideas are used as inspiration, that ideas are undertaken with appropriate adult supervision, and that each adult uses their own discretion and knowledge of their children to consider the safety and suitability.

Kidadl cannot accept liability for the execution of these ideas, and parental supervision is advised at all times, as safety is paramount. Anyone using the information provided by Kidadl does so at their own risk and we can not accept liability if things go wrong.

Sponsorship & Advertising Policy

Kidadl is independent and to make our service free to you the reader we are supported by advertising.

We hope you love our recommendations for products and services! What we suggest is selected independently by the Kidadl team. If you purchase using the buy now button we may earn a small commission. This does not influence our choices. Please note: prices are correct and items are available at the time the article was published.

Kidadl has a number of affiliate partners that we work with including Amazon. Please note that Kidadl is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.

We also link to other websites, but are not responsible for their content.

Read our Sponsorship & Advertising Policy
Get The Kidadl Newsletter

1,000 of inspirational ideas direct to your inbox for things to do with your kids.

Thank you! Your newsletter will be with you soon.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
No items found.