James Family History
James Name Meaning
English and Welsh: from the Middle English personal name James. Introduced to England by the Normans this is an Old French form of Late Latin Iacomus a variant of Latin Iacobus Greek Iakōbos the New Testament rendering of Hebrew Ya‘aqob (see Jacob ). The medieval Latin (Vulgate) Bible distinguished between Old Testament Iacob (which was uninflected) and New Testament Iacobus (with inflections). The latter developed into James in medieval French. The distinction was carried over into the King James Bible of 1611 and Jacob and James remain as separate names in English usage. Most European languages however make no such distinction so that forms such as French Jacques stand for both the Old and the New Testament names. This surname is also very common among African Americans. Compare Jack .
Source: Dictionary of American Family Names ©2013, Oxford University Press