Wright

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This article is about the surname. For other uses, see Wright (disambiguation).
Wright
Family name
Meaning Worker, maker
Region of origin England
Footnotes: Frequency Comparisons[1]

Wright is an occupational surname originating in England.[1] The term 'Wright' comes from the circa 700 AD Old English word 'wryhta' or 'wyrhta', meaning worker or shaper of wood. Later it became any occupational worker[2][3] (for example, a shipwright is a person who builds ships), and is used as a British family name. Wright is also an anglicized version of the Scots Gaelic clan name "MacIntyre" or "Mac an t-Saoir", meaning "son of the wright" (son of the carpenter).

The word carpentier, now "carpenter", was introduced into England in 1066 and slowly replaced the traditional name and meaning of wright.[4] Wright is the sixteenth most common surname in England.[1] Its use as an occupational title continued until the mid-19th century. Its occupational use was often combined with other words such as in wheelwright or playwright.[5]

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  1. ^ a b c Wright Surname at Forebears
  2. ^ Webster's New Collegiate Dictionary. ISBN 0-87779-338-7. 
  3. ^ Harrison, Henry (1969). Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary 2. Genealogical Publishing Company. p. 311. 
  4. ^ Clan MacIntyre history; Archived August 28, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  5. ^ "Oxford English Dictionary, 2nd Edition, Version 4.0 (Windows & Mac)".