"fitz" in names (was: Scottish "Osborn" and clothing)
- K Smith wrote:
> . . .I've always heard that the "Fitz" at the beginning of a surnameThat's a common misconception. I'm not sure where it got started, but
> was for a son born out of wedlock, meaning "bas***d son of" so and so.
I suspect it's as widespread as it is because it's such a popular
device in novels with fantasy or historical settings.
In fact, "fitz" just means "son of", and is as applicable to a son
sired on a wife as one sired on anyone else. It ultimately comes from
the Latin "filius" ("son"), which gave rise to the Old French phrase
"le fiz" or "le fuiz" ("the son of"), which was taken to England by the
Normans and eventually shortened and Anglicized as you see.
Barony of Bryn Gwlad
Kingdom of Ansteorra