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MAY Family History

This ancient and interesting surname with the various spellings of May, Le May, Maye, Mayes, Mays, Mayze, Mayzes, Mey, Meys, Lemay and no doubt others as well, is of early medieval English origins, but probably from a Norman French introduction. It derives from a term of endearment or greeting (mai) given to a young person, or somebody of close friend or kinship. Similar expressions in the twentieth century are 'lad(die)' or 'man' or even 'guy' which is now applied to both males and females. The surname it is claimed can also be a hypocoristic or shortened form of "Matthew", and when with a plural ending implies a patronymic 'Son of May'...

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