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Pérez, Perez
PronunciationSpanish: [ˈpeɾeθ] / [ˈpeɾes]
Hebrew: [ˈpeʁets]
Language(s)Spanish, Hebrew
Region of originSpain, Israel
MeaningSon of Pero or Pedro (Peter) /
To breach or to burst forth
Other names
Variant(s)Fares, Farez, Fretz, Peres, Peris, Peretz, Pesidas, Pharez, Pretz, Pritz, Peters

Pérez or Perez, as most commonly written in English, is a Spanish and Jewish surname popular among people of Sephardic Jewish descent.


The surname with Spanish origins, written in Spanish orthography as Pérez, is a patronymic surname meaning "son of Pero or Pedro (Peter)". The surname has a Portuguese counterpart with the same meaning and etymology, Peres, written with a final "s" instead of "z" and without the accent.

The surname with a Hebrew origin is transliterated into English as either Perez or Peretz, and is derived from the Hebrew given name פרץ (cf. Genesis 38:29), after the biblical character Perez (son of Judah), which in Hebrew means "to breach" or "to burst forth". That biblical character's Hebrew name, however, is transliterated as Farés in the Spanish Christian Bible.

Neither the Spanish nor the Hebrew surname corresponds to one single lineage. Instead, both correspond to many unrelated lineages.

Additionally, while the Spanish and Hebrew etymological origins are distinct, there are nevertheless those who carry the surname because, in their particular case, the origin of their surname is Spanish Jewish (i.e. Sephardic), and they, as Spanish Jews or their descendants, adopted the surname precisely because of its ambiguity.

Pérez as a surname among Spanish Jews or their descendants could be considered by their non-Jewish Spanish or Hispanic neighbors a typical Christian surname, yet still pay homage to their Jewish roots. This was helpful during the times of the Spanish Inquisition and its persecution of the Jews (and their baptized New Christian descendants) in Spain and its colonies in Hispanic America.

Among Spaniards and Hispanics, the surname by itself does not necessarily indicate a Jewish heritage. Likewise, among Jews, the surname does not by itself necessarily indicate a Sephardic heritage.


In Castilian Spanish, the name is pronounced [ˈpeɾeθ] and in Latin America, [ˈpeɾes]. The accent or stress is placed on the second-to-last syllable as with all Spanish patronymic surnames.

In Modern Hebrew: [ˈpeʁets].

Geographical distribution[edit]

As of 2014, 31.6% of all known bearers of the surname Pérez were residents of Mexico (frequency 1:51), 10.4% of Spain (1:57), 7.2% of Venezuela (1:54), 6.9% of Colombia (1:89), 6.8% of the United States (1:682), 5.7% of Guatemala (1:36), 5.6% of Cuba (1:26), 4.3% of Argentina (1:129), 3.0% of Peru (1:137), 2.8% of the Dominican Republic (1:47), 2.8% of the Philippines (1:460), 2.1% of Chile (1:110), 1.5% of Nicaragua (1:52), 1.4% of El Salvador (1:60), 1.3% of Honduras (1:87) and 1.0% of Ecuador (1:212).

In Spain, the frequency of the surname was higher than national average (1:57) in the following autonomous communities:

In Cuba, the frequency of the surname was higher than national average (1:26) in the following provinces:[1]

List of persons with the surname[edit]

Fictional characters with the surname[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Pérez surname distribution
  2. ^ Peter Siljedahl (2012). "Sune och tjejhatarligan". Boktips. Retrieved 16 April 2016.
  3. ^ Peter Siljedahl (1985). "Sune börjar tvåan". Boktips. Retrieved 16 April 2016.