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SURNAME. A name which is added to the christian name, and which, in modern times, have become family names.
     2. They are called surnames, because originally they were written over the name in judicial writings and contracts. They were and are still used for the purpose of distinguishing persons of the same name. They were taken from something attached to the persons assuming them, as John Carpenter, Joseph Black, Samuel Little, &c. See Name.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
In anger, Park attacked another man, surnamed Jung, who had nothing to do with their fight.
A Shanghai woman surnamed Ma also tested positive for the virus on Thursday, according to a statement issued by the Shanghai Municipal Health and Family Planning Commission.
Nine people have died -- five in Shanghai, two in Zhejiang, one in Jiangsu, and one in Anhui where a 35-year-old woman surnamed Han, who was among the first cases reported, died late Tuesday, Xinhua News Agency reported.
In Jiangxi Province, health authorities confirmed the province's second H7N9 bird flu case, a 76-year-old woman surnamed Xiong.
Neither the driver of the Toyota nor the man behind the wheel of the British luxury car, also surnamed Huang, 38, had been drinking, breathalyzer tests showed.
A 56-year-old man surnamed Wang, a 35-year-old woman surnamed Gan, and a 37-year-old man surnamed Sun all tested positive for H7N9 and are being treated at the First Affiliated Hospital of the College of Medicine, Zhejiang University in Hangzhou.
The man killed in the accident is surnamed Wang, and was 45-years-old.
Ting's 46-year-old wife, surnamed Hung (?), initially told police that during a dispute over debt, Ting had threatened her with a knife, but she managed to wrestle if from him and killed him with it.
Later that day, also on Mystery Beach, a 40-year-old woman surnamed Wei and her 10-year-old son surnamed Lee were riding on an ATV with friends when a massive rogue wave suddenly crashed into them and sucked them into the ocean, never to be seen again alive.
In the case of the woman surnamed Wei, she had been riding an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) with her son on Mystery Beach, when they were suddenly washed out to sea by a rogue wave at 5:03 p.m.
An eight-year-old girl surnamed Hung went to Neipi Beach in Nanfangao with her family and friends in the afternoon, and when Hung's father was parking his car, the girl and other family members and friends went to play on the beach, the report said.
The two wounded victims included a 39-year-old man surnamed Chen, who suffered a wound to his head and a 37-year-old man surnamed Lin, who suffered wounds to his abdomen and leg.