A patronymic, or patronym, is a component of a personal name based on the given name of one's father, grandfather (i.e., an avonymic),[1][2] or an earlier male ancestor. A component of a name based on the name of one's mother or a female ancestor is a matronymic. Each is a means of conveying lineage.

Patronymics are still in use, including mandatory use, in many countries worldwide, although their use has largely been replaced by or transformed into patronymic surnames. Examples of such transformations include common English surnames such as Johnson (son of John).

Origins of terms

The usual noun and adjective in English is patronymic, but as a noun this exists in free variation alongside patronym. [a] The first part of the word patronym comes from Greek πατήρ patēr "father" (GEN πατρός patros whence the combining form πατρο- patro-);[3] the second part comes from Greek ὄνυμα onyma, a variant form of ὄνομα onoma "name".[4] In the form patronymic, this stands with the addition of the suffix -ικός (-ikos), which was originally used to form adjectives with the sense ‘pertaining to’ (thus 'pertaining to the father's name'). These forms are attested in Hellenistic Greek as πατρώνυμος (patrōnymos) and πατρωνυμικός (patrōnymikos).[5] The form patronym, first attested in English in 1834, was borrowed into English from French patronyme, which had previously borrowed the word directly from Greek. Patronymic, first attested in English in 1612, has a more complex history. Both Greek words had entered Latin, and, from Latin, French. The English form patronymic was borrowed through the mutual influence of French and Latin on English.[6]

Other Languages
Afrikaans: Patroniem
Bân-lâm-gú: Pē-miâ
беларуская: Патронім
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Патронім
català: Patronímic
čeština: Patronymum
Cymraeg: Patronymig
dansk: Patronym
Deutsch: Patronym
español: Patronímico
Esperanto: Patronomo
euskara: Patronimiko
فارسی: پدرنامی
Frysk: Patronym
한국어: 부칭
hrvatski: Patronim
Bahasa Indonesia: Patronimik
italiano: Patronimico
עברית: פטרונים
latviešu: Tēvvārds
Lëtzebuergesch: Patronym
lietuvių: Tėvavardis
македонски: Патроним
Nederlands: Patroniem
日本語: 父称
norsk nynorsk: Patronymikon
occitan: Nom d'ostal
Plattdüütsch: Patronym
português: Patronímico
română: Patronimic
русиньскый: Патроним
русский: Отчество
Scots: Patronymic
slovenščina: Patronimik
српски / srpski: Патроним
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Patronim
suomi: Patronyymi
svenska: Patronymikon
українська: Ім'я по батькові
中文: 父名