About WilliamGo back to names list
Likely the most successful of all Old French names of Germanic origin that were introduced to England by the Normans. The fact that it was borne by the Conqueror himself does not seem to have inhibited its favour with the ‘conquered’ population; in the first century after the Conquest it was the commonest male name of all, and not only among the Normans. Overtaken by John in the later Middle Ages, William has continued to keep pace in second place until the 20th century. Famous bearers include William Shakespeare (playwright), William Wallace (Scottish patriot) and Price William.