Maxwell (surname)

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This article is about the surname Maxwell. For other uses, see Maxwell.

Maxwell is an Irish, Jewish, and Scottish surname. The Scottish name is a habitational name, derived from a location near Melrose, in Roxburghshire, Scotland. This name was first recorded in 1144, as Mackeswell, meaning "Mack's spring (or stream)" (from the Old English well[a]). The surname Maxwell is also common in Ulster; where it has, in some cases, been adopted as alternate form of the surname Miskell. The surname Maxwell is also used as a Jewish surname, either as an adoption of the Scottish name, or as an Americanization of one of several like-sounding Jewish surnames.[1] The surname Maxwell is represented in Scottish Gaelic as MacSual.

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  1. ^ Dictionary of American Family Names. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-508137-4.