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Origins of the Robinson surname

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What does the name Robinson mean?

The Robinson surname is common in the United Kingdom, where it is the fifteenth most popular. Similarly, it is the twentieth most common in the United States. Due to English settlement of the province of Ulster, this surname can also be found relatively often in Northern Ireland. Robinson is thought to be most often a patronymic surname that originated in England, deriving from a description of 'son of Robin (a common diminutive of Robert)'. More rarely, the surname Robinson can sometimes be encountered as an anglicisation of some Jewish names like Rubenstein and Rabinowitz.

Alternative variations of the name Robinson

Robinson, Robbinson, Robenson, Rabinson, Rebinson

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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Where do most Robinsons live?

In 1921, most Robinsons 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 Robinsons

How common is your surname?

11th most common surname in the UK

We have 998,000 records for the Robinson surname. The oldest one dates back to 1220.

Who were Robinsons most likely to marry?




Our Marriage record sets tell us which families married Robinsons.

What are the most common Robinson first names?

  • John
  • William
  • Mary
  • Elizabeth

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

Common jobs for Robinsons

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

Common Female occupations for Robinsons in 1921


Cotton Weaver


Domestic Servant


General Servant Domestic




Common Male occupations for Robinsons in 1921
Coal Miner


Agricultural Labourer




General Labourer




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