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An explanation of the Mort surname?

Mort: is this surname latin for "death"?

There is a Peter Mort in Australia who believes very strongly that the Morts can trace their origins back to the Normans, and that is why the Mort name has a certain French twist to it. There are a number of Morts in the Boyd's Marriage Index whose names are spell as Morte, with an accent grave. There is also a legend in my own family that the Morts were descendants of the Huguenots who were expelled from France in 1598. In fact a good many Huguenots did in fact settle in Lancashire. Since Henry Mort, my ggg.grandfather and his family were Presbyterian, I tended to believe that story. However my dear late friend, Eric Jones, a latin scholar and schoolmaster thought the French connection was just a lot of "balderdash". It sort of hurt my feelings at the time when he said that, but when Eric and I visited the records office in Preston, I saw church records for Morts on lamb skin that were dated in the 12th and 13th centuries. So clearly there were Mort families living in Lancashire long before the Edict of Nantes. Eric Jones went even further in destroying the french origins of the name, and claimed that the name "Mort" was an old English word that means stump, like in tree stump. Eric was a prodigious scholar, but I still prefer the more romantic versions of the Mort name.

by Ernie Mort

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