Pope Family History
Pope Name Meaning
English: nickname from Middle English pope (derived via Old English from Late Latin papa ‘bishop pope’ from Greek pappas ‘father’ in origin a nursery word.) In the early Christian Church the Latin term was at first used as a title of respect for male clergy of every rank but in the Western Church it gradually came to be restricted to bishops and then only to the bishop of Rome; in the Eastern Church it continued to be used of all priests (see Popov Papas ). The nickname would have been used for a vain or pompous man or for someone who had played the part of the pope in a pageant or play. The surname is also present in Ireland and Scotland. North German: variant of Poppe . German: translation of Pabst .
Source: Dictionary of American Family Names ©2013, Oxford University Press