DNA analysis suggests that during during Neolithic times some 5,000 years ago, our ancestors spread into Europe from Anatolia (eastern modern-day Turkey). Today, this grouping spreads across Iberia, Italy, Turkey, Albania, Greece, Arabic countries and into India.
Base name Raphael; Jewish/English/French from the Hebrew given name Refael
Harrison, H. (1918) Surnames of the United Kingdom – A Concise Etymological Dictionary Marland Press
Our surname has a contorted origin and is believed to be an Anglicised adoption of the French version of the Jewish given name RAPHAEL. Being relatively rare and unusual, it is often miss-spelt and many variants have been noted including:- RAFAL, RAFFEL, RAFFELL, REFFEL, REFFELLE, REVELL, RUFFLE and WREFFELL. Some of these variants are obviously ‘sound-alike's’, and there are also genuine variations - such as REFFIELD and REFFOLD. There are good reasons to suggest that these surnames had a common origin. Even today within the family the name is pronounced a number of ways - including REFFLE or REAFELL.