Log in  | New? Register

152,674 GRIFFITHS members around the world

Family spelling variants includes Griffin, Gruffydd, Gruffudd, Griffith

Stay informed about GRIFFITHS Family online & offline events!

Keep me informed as to GRIFFITHS Family online & offline events

My GRIFFITHS family came from?

See our recent family gatherings

GRIFFITHS Family History

This ancient Welsh surname derives from the Old Welsh personal name 'Grippiud', which gradually developed into 'Griffudd', 'Gruffudd', 'Gruffydd', as well as 'Griffith' which was the most popular spelling when it became adopted as a hereditary surname. The suffix '-udd' relates to an Old Welsh word meaning 'lord' or 'prince'. The first half of the name may possibly derive from the Latin 'rufus', meaning red-haired, but this is not certain.

Griffith, and related variations, was a very popular personal name throughout much of Welsh history, and was the name of several Welsh princes and prominent leaders, including Gruffudd ap Cynan who was the king of Gwynedd from 1081 until his death in 1137.

As a surname it is patronymic, in that it means 'son of Griffith'. As such it refers back to an ancestor who lived at some point between the 16th and 19th centuries, the period when the traditional Welsh patronymic naming system gave way very gradually to fixed, hereditary surnames. In western parts of Wales, and in the north west in particular hereditary surnames were generally adopted by ordinary people during the late 18th century and the first half of the 19th century. The ancestor whose personal name was Griffith and who gave the family its surname would therefore have lived during that particular period.

Both Griffith and Griffiths remain popular spellings of this surname today.

In Wales Griffiths is currently the country's 10th most popular surname. Throughout the whole of Wales and England, around 117,000 individuals bear the Griffiths surname. Elsewhere in the world, it is a relatively common surname in Canberra, Australia (one in 767 families), Auckland, New Zealand (one in 869) and in Sydney, Australia (one in 1,020). There are over 309,000 individuals living in the United States recorded with this surname.

Notable people

  • John Willis Griffiths (1809—82), an American naval architect, designed the first of the great clipper ships, the Rainbow, which began a new era in ship-building.
  • D.W. Griffith (1874—1948) an influential American film director and a pioneer of film editing techniques during the early years of cinema, as well as the art of film narrative.
  • Terry Griffiths (b.1947), a celebrated Welsh professional snooker player who was world champion in 1979.




Surnames of the United Kingdom (1912) by Henry Harrison


Who have we missed?

Tell us about any famous GRIFFITHS (or surname variant) you think we should add here. We will get our genealogists to check them out and add them to the list. Thanks!


Join the conversation with the GRIFFITHS tribe

  • Find your GRIFFITHS ancestor
  • Tell us about your GRIFFITHS Family
  • Tell us about your GRIFFITHS ancestors
  • Ask a question about the GRIFFITHS history
  • Leave a message for GRIFFITHS family members
Harry Griffiths

I want to know my origins. I’m a tribalist, I wish that one day in the future, there is a place where those who do not forget the ways of the past can mix it with technology, like in the game Horizon Zero Dawn. Imagine a place where we live simple lives, no nations that run by corrupt people. I’m not an extremist, I only want to be who I am and I feel that the first step is to know where I came from.


Hello fellow Griffiths, I am Ronelle from Cape Town South Africa, I am trying to find out more about my father's side of the family. I never really knew my father, he left when I was 2 years old after being married to my mother for 21 years. He in turn did not really know his father either, I don't even have a name of my grandfather. Is there someone willing to help me find out more about him. My father was Walter George (Wally) Griffiths, bright red hair, sky blue eyes, I would really love to know more about the Griffiths family name, any information is much appreciated and welcomed.

Cathy Griffiths

Hello Griffiths Family. I would like to meet you. I am a Griffiths in Louisiana, USA. I don't know who the 1 Griffiths listed in Louisiana but I would like to know. I look forward to meeting you. Cheers, Cathy Griffiths

Alan Griffiths

My grandfather Henry Griffiths was from the East End of London, his mother was descended from the Hugenots, whilst his father was probably from somewhere in South Wales.


You are not register

Join Log in
Areas of Origin for GRIFFITHS

Invite more GRIFFITHS family members!

Write an email address and click 'Invite' to share this page with more members of the GRIFFITHS tribe.

Log in or Register to invite others
Family Coat of Arms Generator

Why not see what your family crest could look like based on your own family characteristics?

Create Crest

Discover where the GRIFFITHS Family members live around the world

Explore where tribe members live today!


Show off the GRIFFITHS Family Crest…

Wear your crest with pride...plenty of products to choose from