Mei (surname)

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Méi (Chinese: ; pinyin: Méi) is a romanized spelling of a Chinese surname, transcribed in the Mandarin dialect. In Hong Kong and other Cantonese-speaking regions, the name may be transliterated as Mui or Moy.[1] In Vietnam, this surname is spelled Mai. In romanized Korean, it is spelled Mae. The name literally translates in English to the plum fruit. The progenitor of the Méi clan, Méi Bo, originated from near a mountain in ancient China that was lined at its base with plum trees.[2] It is also a European surname.


The Méi clan came from the Zi family. They were awarded a kingdom in the southeast of Bo County in Anhui. The Méi ancestral hometown is located 60 miles southeast of Runan county, Henan province in central China.

The first patriarch of the Méi lineage was Méi Bo or the Earl of Méi.[1] During King Zhou's reign (Shang Dynasty,1766-1122 BCE), Méi Bo pleaded repeatedly to King Zhou to repent from his cruel and corrupt ways. Méi Bo's convictions angered the erratic ruler, which he viewed as insubordination. As punishment, the Earl of Méi was beheaded. Inspired by Méi Bo's acts, his descendants subsequently adopted the surname of Méi to pay homage to this ancient noble.

People with the surname Méi 梅[edit]

People with the surname Mei (European surname)[edit]

  • Andrea Mei (born 1989), Italian footballer
  • Anna Mei (born 1967), Italian racing cyclist and mountain biker
  • Bernardino Mei (1612/15–1676), Italian painter and engraver
  • Giovanni Mei (born 1953), Italian retired footballer
  • Girolamo Mei (1519–1594), Italian historian and humanist
  • Lev Mei (1822-1862), Russian dramatist and poet
  • Lydia Mei (1896-1965), Estonian artist
  • Natalie Mei (1900-1975), Estonian painter and graphic artist
  • Nicola Mei (1985), Italian professional basketball player
  • Paolo Mei (1831–1900), Italian painter
  • Stefano Mei (born 1963), Italian long-distance runner


  1. ^ a b Louie, Emma Woo: "Chinese American Names"., p.29. McFarland & Co, Inc., 1998.
  2. ^ Li, Jin Sheng: "Yún hé Sān Bai Xìng.", p. 77. Print date unavailable.