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The meaning of Silva
1. Portuguese, Galician, and Italian: habitational name from any of the many places called Silva in Portugal, Galicia (Spain), and Italy, or a topographic name from (Old) Portuguese and (Old) Galician silva ‘wood’, later ‘bramble’. Compare Da Silva and Silba. 2. Jewish (Sephardic): adoption of the Iberian surname (see 1 above) at the moment of conversion to Roman Catholicism. After the return to Judaism (generations later), some descendants retained the name their families used as Catholics. Some characteristic forenames: Spanish Jose, Manuel, Carlos, Juan, Luis, Jesus, Mario, Fernando, Francisco, Pedro, Roberto, Miguel. Portuguese Joao, Paulo, Joaquim, Agostinho, Duarte, Henrique, Serafim, Vasco, Ilidio, Adao, Afonso, Altair.
Dictionary of American Family Names, 2nd edition, © Oxford University Press, 2022.
How common is the last name Silva in the United States?
Based on the Decennial U.S. Census, the surname Silva has seen a significant increase in popularity between 2000 and 2010. In 2000, Silva was the 214th most common surname, but by 2010 it had risen to the 163rd position, representing a change of 23.83%. The count of individuals with the Silva surname also grew from 126,164 in 2000 to 161,633 in 2010, marking an increase of 28.11%. An upward trend is observed in the proportion per 100,000 people as well, escalating from 46.77 to 54.79 during the same period.
|Proportion per 100k||46.77||54.79||17.15%|
Race and Ethnicity of people with the last name Silva
When it comes to ethnic identity, the data from the Decennial U.S. Census shows that the majority of individuals with the Silva surname identify as Hispanic, with this group increasing by 5.49% between 2000 and 2010. The number of Silvas identifying as Black saw the most significant change, growing by 70.59%, while the representation of Silvas within the Asian/Pacific Islander community also increased slightly. On the other hand, the percentage of Silvas identifying as White and American Indian/Alaskan Native slightly decreased, with the largest drop seen in those identifying with two or more races, which fell by 65.89%.
|Two or More Races||4.75%||1.62%||-65.89%|
|American Indian and Alaskan Native||0.41%||0.39%||-4.88%|
silva 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 Silva is Spanish & Portuguese, which comprises 45.5% of all ancestry found in people with the surname. The next two most common ancestries are Indigenous American (14.8%) and British & Irish (14.5%). Additional ancestries include French & German, Italian, Eastern European, Angolan & Congolese, and Scandinavian.
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|Spanish & Portuguese||45.5%|
|British & Irish||14.5%|
Possible origins of the surname silva
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 Silva have recent ancestry locations spanning a few countries, mostly in Portugal, and United Kingdom.
|RECENT ANCESTRY Location||Percentage|
|Aveiro District, Portugal||35.20%|
|Porto District, Portugal||32.00%|
What silva 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 Silva is R-P311, which is predominantly found among people with European ancestry. Haplogroup R-P311 is descended from haplogroup R-M343. Other common haplogroups include Q-M3 and R-L51, which are predominantly found among people with East Asian & Indigenous American and European ancestry. Other surnames with similar common haplogroups are: Diaz, Torres, Rodriguez, Gonzalez, Fernandez, Ruiz, Santos, Alvarez, Romero, Gutierrez.
The most common maternal haplogroups of people with Silva surname are: A2, B2, H. These most commonly trace back to individuals of European ancestry.
Your maternal lineage may be linked to some of the first Americans
Though the Ice Age was beginning to retreat when your A2 ancestors first entered North America, there were still massive barriers blocking their way. Glaciers and inhospitable climate covered much of the continent, blocking entry into the interior. Nonetheless, researchers have found evidence that a wave of American founders migrated over 13,000 kilometers to reach southern Chile in only 2,000 years, a blink of an eye in the story of human migration! Their highway to the south was the coast of the Pacific, stocked with fish, diverse marine mammals, and other valuable resources in the rich kelp forests of the upper latitudes and in the abundant fresh-water rivers near the equator. Because of this rapid movement south, the A2 haplogroup and its diverse branches are found throughout North and South America.
What do people with the surname Silva 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.
"Silva" Surname 36.5%
23andMe Users 41.3%
When sounds made by others, like the sound of chewing or yawning, provoke strong emotional reactions in an individual.
"Silva" Surname 33.6%
23andMe Users 27.9%
Drinks one or more sugary drinks per day.
"Silva" Surname 18.6%
23andMe Users 21.1%
A severe headache characterized by intense pain, sensitivity to light and sound, and often accompanied by nausea and vomiting.
"Silva" Surname 15.1%
23andMe Users 16.4%