The Most Popular Last Name in the Philippines, Ranked

Choose the last name you think is the most popular!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on Jun 20, 2024 07:01
Knowing the most popular last names in the Philippines can offer a fascinating glimpse into the country's rich cultural tapestry and historical influences. Such information not only serves genealogical interests but also helps in understanding how various cultural groups have meshed together over centuries to form the modern Filipino identity. This insight becomes particularly valuable in academic and social studies, shedding light on migration patterns and regional ancestry links. Through this interactive ranking, users have the opportunity to contribute by voting for the last names they believe are most widespread or significant in the Philippines. This collective input ensures a dynamic and current reflection of societal trends. Additionally, engagement from various demographics provides a comprehensive overview, aiding in the accuracy of the rankings and enriching the understanding of Filipino heritage.

What Is the Most Popular Last Name in the Philippines?

  1. 1


    A common last name in the Philippines, often associated with the Tagalog region.
    • Origin: Spanish, meaning 'saints'
  2. 2


    A popular Filipino surname, meaning 'cross' in Spanish.
    • Origin: Spanish
  3. 3


    A widespread surname in the Philippines, signifying 'kings' or 'royals' in Spanish.
    • Origin: Spanish
  4. 4


    A very common surname in the Philippines, of Spanish origin.
    • Origin: Spanish
  5. 5


    A prevalent Filipino surname, Spanish in origin, possibly meaning 'cold mountain'.
    • Origin: Spanish
  6. 6


    A common surname in the Philippines, of Spanish origin, meaning 'towers'.
    • Origin: Spanish
  7. 7


    A popular surname in the Philippines, of Spanish origin, meaning 'son of Martin'.
    • Origin: Spanish
  8. 8


    A Filipino surname of Spanish origin, meaning 'field'.
    • Origin: Spanish
  9. 9


    A common name in the Philippines, derived from Spanish, referring to someone baptized.
    • Origin: Spanish
  10. 10


    A widespread surname in the Philippines, of Spanish origin, possibly referring to someone living near a river.
    • Origin: Spanish

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About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most popular last name in the Philippines. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or surname is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 106 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Movers & Shakers

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each surname once every 24 hours. The rank of each surname is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

Additional Information

More about the Most Popular Last Name in the Philippines

In the Philippines, last names hold deep cultural and historical significance. The most popular last name in the country reflects a blend of influences from various cultures and periods in history. Understanding these influences provides insight into why certain last names became widespread.

The Philippines has a rich history marked by various periods of colonization and trade. These interactions brought new names and naming conventions to the islands. The most notable influence came from Spain, which colonized the Philippines for over 300 years, from 1565 to 1898. During this time, many Filipinos adopted Spanish last names. This was partly due to a decree by Governor-General Narciso Claveria y Zaldua in 1849, which aimed to standardize and simplify the naming system. The decree required Filipinos to adopt family names from an official catalog. As a result, many families took on Spanish surnames.

The influence of Spanish culture did not erase the indigenous names completely. Many Filipinos retained their native first names, while adopting Spanish last names. This blend created a unique naming tradition that persists today. The most popular last name in the Philippines often reflects this mix of Spanish and native elements.

Another factor that contributed to the popularity of certain last names is the structure of Filipino society. The Philippines is an archipelago with over 7,000 islands, leading to diverse cultures and languages. However, the spread of certain last names occurred through migration, trade, and intermarriage. Families moved from one island to another, bringing their names with them. Over time, some names became more common across different regions.

Religion also played a role in shaping Filipino surnames. The majority of Filipinos are Roman Catholic, a legacy of Spanish colonization. Many popular last names have religious connotations or are derived from saints' names. This connection to religion helped certain names gain widespread acceptance and usage.

In addition to Spanish influence, the Philippines experienced other cultural impacts. Chinese traders and settlers have been present in the Philippines for centuries. Their influence is evident in some of the last names that are common today. Chinese surnames were often adapted to fit the local language and culture, further enriching the diversity of Filipino names.

American colonization from 1898 to 1946 also left its mark on Filipino names. While the impact was not as profound as the Spanish influence, some American names and naming conventions were adopted during this period. This added another layer to the complex tapestry of Filipino surnames.

The popularity of certain last names in the Philippines is a testament to the country's rich history and cultural diversity. These names serve as a link to the past, reflecting the various influences that have shaped Filipino identity. Understanding the background of these names provides a glimpse into the historical and cultural forces that have shaped the Philippines.

Today, the most popular last name in the Philippines continues to be a symbol of the country's unique blend of cultures. It stands as a reminder of the historical events and cultural exchanges that have left their mark on the Filipino people. The story of Filipino last names is a story of resilience, adaptation, and the enduring influence of history.

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