Veneto Last Names

Even today in the Veneto area, the vast majority of the population speak the Veneto dialect. The surnames present in the region are amongst those which in time have been less italianalised.

At present the most common surnames in the Veneto area can be distinguished in those that have retained the final consonant (in particular the -n), those which have the preposition dal- or the suffix -ato and last but not least, those deriving from professions or nicknames.

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Amongst the surnames ending in -n we have those tied to place origins such as Visentin (from Vicenza), Trevisan (from Treviso), Pavan (from Padova), Furlan (from Fruili), Schiavon (a town in the county of Vicenza), Trentin and Bressan. Amongst the surnames deriving from crafts, we can list Marangon ("carpenter"), Ballarin ("dancer" - rather than a profession in this case it refers to a nickname). Zanca or Zanchetta ("lame") and Bordignon (possibly meaning "silk spinner"); finally those surnames deriving from first names, the main part deriving from the name Giovanni (John) and its' diminutive (Zambon, Zanon, Zanin, Zanini and also Zanetti, Zampieri, Zanatta) but there is also Perin (from Piero - Peter), Lorenzon, Berton, Martin, Baldan.

The most common surname in the region remains one of the most common Italian surnames Rossi but there are also many professional names such as Ferrari modified into local versions such as Favero, Favaretto and Fabri; the typical Venetan surname Boscolo ("woodcutter") and also Masiero ("sharecropper, harvester"), Sartor and Sartori ("tailor"), Zago (both "deacon, alter boy" but also "simpleton").

Surnames deriving from first names include Frigo (from Federico, Frederick), Vianello (from Viviano, Vivian), Bernardi, Martini, Stefani whilst Basso ("short"), Moro ("dark"), Gallo ("rooster"), Scarpa ("shoe") and Gobbo ("hunchbacked") refer to nicknames.

Finally in the Veneto area, the preposition Dal (much used also in the Friuli area) rather than the typically Italian Del is much diffused. Some examples are Dal Farra, Dal Molin, Dal Lago, Dal Zotto and Dal Corso. The most used suffix is -ato such as in Bonato, Simionato, Volpato and Marcato indicating a family descendant or as a diminutive.

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