Show ContentsBarras History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The surname Barras is an occupational name; that is, it is derived from the occupation of the original bearer. In this case, it is derived from the Old French word bar, which means bass; sea bass are a staple fish found in the Mediterranean. Occupational names frequently were derived from the principal object associated with the activity of the original bearer, such as tools or products. These types of occupational surnames are called metonymic surnames.

Early Origins of the Barras family

The surname Barras was first found in Provence, where the family has held a family seat from ancient times.

Early History of the Barras family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Barras research. Another 185 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1653, 1703, 1755 and 1829 are included under the topic Early Barras History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Barras Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Barras, Baras, Barrasse, Baraz, Le Barras, Barace, Le Barace, Barèce and many more.

Early Notables of the Barras family

Notable amongst the names at this time was

  • Claude Barras, Viscount of Barras

Barras Ranking

In the United States, the name Barras is the 14,417th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. 1 However, in France, the name Barras is ranked the 2,441st most popular surname with an estimated 2,500 - 3,000 people with that name. 2

United States Barras migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Barras Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Joshua Barras, aged 21, settled in Annapolis in 1721
  • Joseph Barras, who settled in Louisiana in 1757
  • Jacques Barras, who settled in Louisiana in 1765
Barras Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Matias Barras, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 3
  • Lucus Barras, aged 26, who landed in New Orleans, La in 1860 3

Australia Barras migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Barras Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Abraham Barras, English convict who was convicted in Pontefract, Wakefield, Yorkshire, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Bangalore" on 1st January 1850, arriving in Moreton Bay, Queensland, Australia 4
  • John Barras, aged 21, who arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "James Fernie" 5

Contemporary Notables of the name Barras (post 1700) +

  • Allen Barras, American journalist and author
  • Taylor Francis Barras (b. 1957), American accountant, polititian and banker
  • Paul François Jean Nicolas de Barras, French Divisional General during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars from 1789 to 1815 6
  • Sébastien Barras, French painter and engraver
  • Romain Barras (b. 1980), French Olympic decathlete
  • Paul Jean François Nicolas Barras (1755-1829), French revolutionary
  • Henri-Georges Siqueira Barras, Brazilian- Swiss football player
  • Tom Barras (b. 1978), English professional road racing cyclist
  • Sid Barras (b. 1948), English former professional road racing cyclist
  • Anthony "Tony" Barras (b. 1971), English footballer

The Barras Motto +

The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Vaillance de Barras
Motto Translation: Valour of Barras.

  1. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  3. Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  4. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 11th September 2020). Retrieved from
  5. South Australian Register Friday 17th November 1854. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) James Fernie 1854. Retrieved
  6. Generals Who Served in the French Army during the Period 1789-1815. (Retrieved 2015, February 11) Paul Barras. Retrieved from on Facebook