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Origin of the name WADE.
Etymology of the name WADE.
Meaning of the baby name WADE.


WADE.  English.  From Anglo-Saxon Wada (q.v.), probably meaning "to ford or wade," especially for the purpose of feeding.  Also see note under Gringolet.

Wade, according to Lower (Patronymica Britannica), is one of  the names that man derives from the face of nature.  Britaine's Remaines (1614) speaks of it as a baptismal name in use in England at the Conquest (1066).  It is one of the oldest English names, as the following folk-rhyme, (quoted by Lower), will show:—

With Thorpe and Bourne; Coke, Carter, Oke,
Combe, Bury, Don and Stowe and Stoke,
With Ey and Port; Shaw, Worth and WADE,
Hill, Gate, Well, Stone are many made
Cliff, Marsh, and Mouth and Don and Sand,
And Beck and Sea with numbers stand.

     As to the derivation of the name, the same author ascribes it to the Anglo-Saxon wād, as importing a meadow or a ford.  The late Dr. E. Cobham Brewer, also, in his excellent Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, derived the name from the Anglo-Saxon wād, a ford; wādan, to ford or go through (a meadow), but erroneously instances the Anglo-Saxon name for the month of June—Weydmonat; as, so called, according to Verstegan, "because the beasts did then weyd in the meadow, that is to say, go and feed there."
    Thus, an investigator may expect to find innumerable instances of the surname from the earliest date when surnames came into general use.  Lower also informs us that the surname Wade itself is also derived from a baptismal use of the name, but affords a grain of comfort by the statement that it is not included in the sixty most common surnames of the English people, a dictum also confirmed by the reports of the Registrar-General of Births, Deaths and Marriages in England, and the data of the four largest American cities.
     Arthur, in his Etymological Dictionary of Names (1857) incorrectly ascribes our surname to the Dutch as derived from weide, a meadow or pasture, but the Dutch weide, it seems, may have been itself derived from the earlier and kindred Anglo-Saxon.  Hereon Ferguson, in his English Surnames (1858) goes more to the root of the matter by relating that the father of the Anglo-Saxon hero Weland, was called in that dialect Wada; in Old Norse, Vadi, and in Old High German Wado. (Wade Genealogy, S.C. Wade, 1900)


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