What are Common French Names

Tell me your name ... and I'll know where you live

Names reveal a lot about a country. Its roots, upheavals, history (s). As in Germany, there are more than a million family names in France.

Some died out because there were too few births. New names came with immigration. Their waves are reflected in the name.

The trend: Martin, Bernard and Thomas still lead the list of family names - as in Germany Müller, Schmidt and Meier - but the world is becoming more colorful. And there is only one entry in France for almost 50,000 names!

The most popular family names in France

rankSurnamenumber
1 .Martin228.857
2 .Bernard120.573
3 .108.141
4 .105.463
5 .102.950
6 .99.920
7 .99.614
8 .98.951
9 .94.261
10 .88.803
11 .87.941
12 .85.489
13 .82.522
14 .79.204
15 .69.685
16 .69.212
17 .66.763
18 .66.417
19 .65.758
20 .64031

Hit list of surnames by department

DepartmentSurname
01. AinJosserand
02. AisneFlamant
03. AllierGuillaumin
04. Alpes-de-Haute-ProvenceRichaud
05. Hautes-AlpesLagier
06. Alpes-MaritimesDalmasso
07. ArdècheFull
08. ArdennesCharlier
09. AriègeSoula
10. AubeFevre
11. AudeSarda
12. AveyronAlbouy
13. Bouches-du-RhôneEsposito
14. CalvadosMadelaine
15. CantalJuillard
16. CharenteVignaud
17. Charente-MaritimeVinet
18. CherBedu
19. CorrèzeFarges
20. CorseLeco
North CorsicaSantoni
South CorsicaAlbertini
21. Côte-d'OrNoir red
22. Côtes-d'ArmorLe Calvez
23. CreusePeyrot
24. DordogneMazeau
25. DoubsVuillemin
26. DrômeTarpaulin
27. YoursDelamare
28. Eure-et-LoirSevestre
29. FinistèreRoudaut
30. GardTeissier
31. Haute-GaronneCastex
32nd GersLaffargue
33. GirondeLeglise
34. HeraultRouanet
35. Ille-et-VilaineCheret
36. IndreLevel
37. Indre-et-LoireArnaut
38. IsereGuillaud
39. JurassicCretin
40th LandesDupouy
41. Loir et CherJouanneau
42. LoirePoyet
43. Haute LoireSaby
44. Loire-AtlantiqueMoyon
45. LoiretAsselin
46th LotDelbos
47. Lot-et-GaronneLaffargue
48. LozèreDalle
49. Maine-et-LoireCesbron
50. SomeRenouf
51. MarneCollard
52. Haute-MarneAubertin
53. MayenneGougeon
54. Meurthe-et-MoselleThouvenin
55. MeuseRouyer
56. MorbihanJehanno
57. MoselleBour
58. NièvreMichot
59. NorthCatteau
60. OiseBoitel
61. OrneLeprince
62. Pas-de-CalaisFlahaut
63. Puy-de-DômeTixir
64. Pyrénées-AtlantiquesEtcheverry
65. Hautes-PyrénéesAbadie
66. Pyrénées-OrientalesCanal
67. Bas RhinWendling
68. Haut RhinSutter
69 D Rhône
69 M: Métropole de Lyon
Rivoire
70. Haute-SaoneGalmiche
71. Saône-et-LoireBouillot
72. SartheBouttier
73. SavoieMollard
74. Haute-SavoieMugnier
75. ParisCohen
76. Seine-MaritimeDuboc
77. Seine-et-MarneMorisseau
78. YvelinesDiallo
79. Deux-SèvresGrellier
80th SommeSueur
81. TarnRouanet
82. Tarn-et-GaronneLarroque
83. VarDalmasso
84. VaucluseBremond
85. VendéeHerbreteau
86. VienneMetais
87. Haute-VienneDesbordes
88. VosgesGo
89. YonneRameau
90. Territoire de BelfortCardot
91. EssonneOliveira
92. Hauts de SeineCamara
93. Seine-Saint-DenisTraore
94. Val-de-MarneAntunes
95. Val d'OiseCamara
971. GuadeloupeAlexis
972. MartiniqueJean-Baptiste
973. GuyaneJoseph
974. Reunion IslandSautron
976. Mayotte *Vigneau
  • Mayotte was only added in 2011. By then, the 975 had already been assigned to Saint-Pierre and Miquelon.

The most popular first names since 1946

In the first years after the war the girls were called Marie and the boys Jean. Hardly anything has changed about that today. In 1959 Brigitte, the first name of the Première Dame, was absolutely top with the French and especially conquered the East.

In 1995 the French had a preference for American first names. Dylan and Kevin were on the rise. At the turn of the millennium, Léa and Thomas were extremely popular. Today Emma and Lucas top the list of first names.

How the first names have changed over time reveals this interactive map from Le Monde.

positionBoysnumbergirlnumber
1Jean1 462 478Marie1 443 924
2Philippe999 104Nathalie755 116
3Michel950 584Isabelle717 238
4Alain865 874Sylvie715 988
5Patrick774 590Catherine700 724
6Nicolas772 686Martine618 898
7Christophe745 720Christine542 580
8Pierre676 542Françoise536 328
9Christian664 310Valerie496 130
10Eric630 762Sandrine477 954
11Frédéric621 064Stephanie463 820
12Laurent618 826Véronique462 526
13Stéphane604 702Sophie460 496
14David604 506Celine444 702
15Pascal599 802Chantal420 778
16Daniel599 346Patricia410 222
17Alexandre597 024Anne408 428
18Julien575 674Brigitte380 302
19Thierry574 254Julie374 860
20Olivier538 594Monique371 254
21Bernard534 846Aurélie349 512
22Thomas512 682Nicole342 790
23Sébastien502 294Laurence339 892
24Gerard472 424Annie332 528
25Didier458 652Emilie330 056
26Dominique444 616Dominique324 118
27Vincent431 032Virginie324 012
28François422 352Corinne322 502
29Bruno421 420Élodie312 600
30Guillaume412 908Christelle308 376
31Jerome403 772Camille306 312
32Jacques384 186Caroline291 970
33Marc371 172Léa285 984
34Maxim364 812Sarah284 648
35Romain359 946Florence284 200
36Claude358 060Laetitia280 994
37Antoine354 142Audrey278 496
38Franck345 576Helene276 910
39Jean-Pierre342 394Laura275 126
40Anthony337 204Manon274 118
41Kevin324 690Michèle257 210
42Gilles322 376Cécile252 316
43Cédric301 428Christiane249 720
44serge300 156Beatrice248 904
45André288 006Claire246 442
46Mathieu282 804Nadine245 056
47Benjamin272 972Dolphins243 934
48Patrice266 348Pauline242 808
49Fabrice265 536Karine238 732
50Joël265 256Mélanie238 730
51Jérémy262 854Marion238 036
52Clement261 552Chloé237 474
53Arnaud257 674Jacqueline235 338
54Denis255 970Elisabeth234 978
55Paul254 076Évelyne234 066
56Lucas253 642marine230 450
57Hervé252 124Claudine228 296
58Jean-Claude252 122Anaïs227 952
59Sylvain250 734Lucie216 870
60Yves247 758Danielle210 764
61Ludovic244 244Carole208 482
62Guy244 104Fabienne204 202
63Florian243 878Mathilde203 982
64Damien242 220Sandra203 858
65Alexis239 006Pascale201 190
66Mickael237 628Annick195 244
67Quentin237 100Charlotte190 148
68Emmanuel235 416Emma187 720
69Louis234 886Severine186 626
70Benoît232 342Sabrina185 776
71Jean-Luc221 492Amandine182 708
72Fabien215 308Myriam179 412
73Francis207 114Jocelyne178 336
74Hugo204 236Alexandra177 274
75Jonathan204 138Angélique174 668
76Loïc202 382Josiane172 480
77Xavier202 106Joelle171 898
78Théo190 870Agnes171 662
79Adrien189 866Mireille158 832
80Raphael188 984Vanessa156 978
81Jean-François183 386Justine156 856
82Gregory178 804Sonia155 938
83Robert175 944Bernadette154 262
84Michael175 294Emmanuelle153 966
85Valentine172 906Ocean152 808
86Cyril172 300Amélie151 756
87Jean-Marc169 868Clara150 484
88René167 576Maryse146 376
89Lionel167 410Annemarie146 340
90Yannick166 178Fanny145 036
91Enzo164 994Magali143 310
92Yannis160 646Marie-Christine140 928
93Jean-Michel159 586Morgane139 610
94Baptiste154 286Inès138 474
95Matthieu152 532Nadia138 130
96Rémi151 660Muriel137 406
97Georges151 434Jessica136 540
98Aurelien149 922Laure133 516
99Nathan148 876Geneviève133 084
100Jean-Paul148 108Estelle132 472

Source: INSEE - France's national statistical institute

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