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Origins of the Cole surname

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What does the name Cole mean?

Cole is an name that is English in origin. It's a patronymic name, that relates to those who are the son or descendant of somebody called 'Nicholas', 'Colin' or 'Cole' (the latter two being diminutive forms of the first name). The name is particularly prevalent in the south of England, and much more rarely found in the north and Scotland.

Alternative variations of the name Cole

Cole, Coal, Coles, Coales, Coale, Coals, Cole, Coles, Coll, Colls,

I’ve managed to trace back to the mid-1500s! I can’t believe it! Utterly engrossing and I have uncovered some quite moving and heartbreaking stories attached to various ancestors. You don’t need any qualifications to start - just time patience, and some information.

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Delve deeper into the Cole family's history

Where do most Coles live?

In 1921, most Coles lived in London.

Census records trace your ancestors through each generation, so you can follow where your relatives lived through each decade.

Interesting facts about Coles

How common is your surname?

111th most common surname in the UK

We have 286,000 records for the Cole surname. The oldest one dates back to 1318.

Who were Coles most likely to marry?




Our Marriage record sets tell us which families married Coles.

What are the most common Cole first names?

  • John
  • William
  • Mary
  • Elizabeth

Our birth record sets tell us the names of Cole family members

Common jobs for Coles

Men and women often performed different types of jobs, so these are displayed by gender to maintain their historical accuracy.

Common Female occupations for Coles in 1921




Domestic Servant


General Servant Domestic


House Servant


Common Male occupations for Coles in 1921
Agricultural Labourer




General Labourer


Farm Labourer




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We found over 490,000 family trees with the Cole surname

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