General Info

I had always believed the origins of the Surname Demeter were Hungarian. There are a large number of Demeters in Hungary and since this was my own family's birthplace, I was positive that was also true of the name. However, I have recently learned that one theory to the origin is German. There are also many Demeters in Germany.
The meaning of the Demeter surname is an old word for weaver. The roots of name are from Bavaria and comes from the Greek word dimitos, which means a special material woven in a special way with double thread. 
German Variations and Bavarian Demeters 1275-1779
This theory was proposed to me by Janos Bogardi. Mr Bogardi is a highly knowledgble Hungarian genealogy researcher see: Radix link. Mr Bogardi speculates that the surname was taken from the given name Demeter. The given name is present in many Eastern European countries, especially Romania in the form Dimitru. The origin of the given name is probably from the Greek Demetrios.
Proposed by the late John C. Demeter Jr. of Fenton Michigan. The origin of our surname originated from when Atilla the Hun had conquered Greece. Atilla was intelligent, and could see how much more efficient surnames were to having to list your lineage all the time. He instructed his officers to assume surnames, and several took the names of various Greek mythologicals. Demeter is of course the goddess of agriculture and fertility. 
St. Demetrios is the patron saint of many Eastern European churches. One such church in the village of Udol is known as St. Demeters
 Images of Saint Demetrios
The first documentation of the surname is from 1428 at Braunau ( Austria on the river Inn ) and in Allgau. ( part of Bavaria ). This does not include variations.
Demeter is the 90th most popular surname in Hungary. 
Below you will find stats on the Demeter population of various countries. It was sent to me by a fellow Demeter from New Zealand. I am not sure of the date these stats were taken, however I suspect the numbers are currently higher. I include it here to give a general idea.

 A Demeter Family Coat of Arms from Hungary.


 I am currently doing research on this coat of arms. The severed head comprises about 25 percent of all Hungarian coats of arms. I will include a detailed report when my research is concluded. 
Check back often for updates! 
 If you can add to or correct any of the information on this page please feel free to contact us

 (c) 2000 Demeter SRC