Explore the Family Name Greene

The meaning of Greene

English and Irish: variant of Green. In North America, this surname has assimilated cognates from other languages.

Dictionary of American Family Names, 2nd edition, © Oxford University Press, 2022.

How common is the last name Greene in the United States?

Based on data from the Decennial U.S. Census, the surname Greene has experienced a fluctuation in popularity over the course of a decade. In 2000, it was ranked as the 228th most popular surname, but by 2010 it had slipped to the 241st position, marking a decline of 5.7%. Despite this drop in rank, the actual count of individuals with the surname Greene increased from 119,604 in 2000 to 126,101 in 2010, representing an overall growth of 5.43%. However, when analyzing the proportion per 100,000 people, there was a decrease of 3.59% from 44.34 in 2000 to 42.75 in 2010.

Proportion per 100k44.3442.75-3.59%

Race and Ethnicity of people with the last name Greene

The ethnic identity associated with the surname Greene has also seen some shifts between 2000 and 2010, as per the Decennial U.S. Census data. The largest group identifying as Greene are those of White ethnicity, although their percentage decreased slightly from 70.34% in 2000 to 67.70% in 2010. The second-largest group is those of Black ethnicity, which saw a small increase from 25.52% to 26.54%. There were notable percentage increases within the Asian/Pacific Islander and Hispanic groups, rising by 23.08% and 70.00% respectively, albeit still representing smaller overall percentages. The count of individuals identifying as two or more races rose by 35.26%, while the percentage of American Indian and Alaskan Native remained relatively stable with a minor increase of 1.39%.

Two or More Races1.73%2.34%35.26%
American Indian and Alaskan Native0.72%0.73%1.39%
Asian/Pacific Islander0.39%0.48%23.08%

Greene ancestry composition

23andMe computes an ancestry breakdown for each customer. People may have ancestry from just one population or they may have ancestry from several populations. The most commonly-observed ancestry found in people with the surname Greene is British & Irish, which comprises 47.8% of all ancestry found in people with the surname. The next two most common ancestries are French & German (19.9%) and Ashkenazi Jewish (7.0%). Additional ancestries include Nigerian, Eastern European, Italian, Ghanaian, Liberian & Sierra Leonean, and Scandinavian.

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British & Irish47.8%
French & German19.9%
Ashkenazi Jewish7.0%

Possible origins of the surname Greene

Your DNA provides clues about where your recent ancestors may have lived. Having many distant relatives in the same location suggests that you may all share common ancestry there. Locations with many distant relatives can also be places where people have migrated recently, such as large cities. If a large number of individuals who share your surname have distant relatives in a specific area, it could indicate a connection between your surname and that location, stemming from either recent ancestral ties or migration.

Based on 23andMe data, people with last name Greene have recent ancestry locations in United Kingdom and Ireland.

RECENT ANCESTRY LocationPercentage
Greater London, United Kingdom78.90%
Merseyside, United Kingdom78.60%
Greater Manchester, United Kingdom78.50%
West Midlands, United Kingdom78.40%
Glasgow City, United Kingdom78.10%

What Greene haplogroups can tell you

Haplogroups are genetic population groups that share a common ancestor on either your paternal or maternal line. These paternal and maternal haplogroups shed light on your genetic ancestry and help tell the story of your family.

The top paternal haplogroup of people with the surname Greene is R-CTS241, which is predominantly found among people with European ancestry. Haplogroup R-CTS241 is descended from haplogroup R-M343. Other common haplogroups include R-L20 and R-P311, which are predominantly found among people with European and European ancestry. Other surnames with similar common haplogroups are: Green, Taylor, White, Brown, Smith, Cooper, Robinson, Wilson, Thompson, Mitchell.

The most common maternal haplogroups of people with Greene surname are: H1, T2b, H. These most commonly trace back to individuals of European ancestry.

greenePaternal Haplogroup Origins R-M343

Your maternal lineage may be linked to Marie Antoinette

Because it is so dominant in the general European population, haplogroup H also appears quite frequently in the continent's royal houses. Marie Antoinette, an Austrian Hapsburg who married into the French royal family, inherited the haplogroup from her maternal ancestors. So did Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, whose recorded genealogy traces his female line to Bavaria. Scientists also discovered that famed 16th century astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus traced his maternal lineages to haplogroup H.

Maternal Haplo Image

What do people with the surname Greene have in common?

Spoiler alert: it's complicated. People with the same last name are usually no more genetically similar than a randomly sampled group of people from the same population. That said, people with the same surname are more likely to have similar ancestries than randomly sampled individuals. The reason is the tendency of people with similar cultural or geographical backgrounds to preferentially mate with one another. That's why people who share a surname may be more likely to share traits and tendencies in common than people within the general population. Check out the percentages below to see the prevalences of tastes, habits, and traits of people with your surname compared with prevalences among 23andMe users.



Chocolate Ice Cream

Prefers chocolate flavored ice cream over other flavors.

"Greene" Surname 42.7%

23andMe Users 41.3%




When sounds made by others, like the sound of chewing or yawning, provoke strong emotional reactions in an individual.

"Greene" Surname 24.8%

23andMe Users 27.9%



Sugary Drink

Drinks one or more sugary drinks per day.

"Greene" Surname 21.4%

23andMe Users 21.1%




A severe headache characterized by intense pain, sensitivity to light and sound, and often accompanied by nausea and vomiting.

"Greene" Surname 18.2%

23andMe Users 16.4%

Are health conditions linked to the last name Greene?

The short answer is that, if there is an association between surname and health, it's usually more about your ancestry than your name. Individuals with a given surname are no more genetically similar than the general population but often have similar ancestries. The populations of people associated with those shared ancestries often have sets of genetic variations, also known as alleles, in common. Some of those alleles are associated with a greater likelihood of developing certain diseases.

Disease variant frequency by ancestry

Disease allele frequencies in populations associated with the surname Greene are shown below. Important Note: not everyone with a disease allele will develop these health condition

Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Y402H variant

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most common cause of irreversible vision loss among older adults. The disease results in damage to the central part of the retina (the macula), impairing vision needed for reading, driving, or even recognizing faces. The 23andMe Health + Ancestry DNA test includes the two most common variants associated with an increased risk of developing the condition: the Y402H variant in the CFH gene and the A69S variant in the ARMS2 gene. Learn more about Age-Related Macular Degeneration

British & Irish 62.1%

23andMe Users 57.2%