Short form of Eugene, now used as a boy's given name in its own right, especially in North America. It has been made familiar by film actors such as Gene Autry, Gene Hackman, Gene Kelly, and Gene Wilder. It is also occasionally used as a girl's name, in which case it represents a respelling of Jean.
English: probably from an otherwise unrecorded Old English personal name, cognate with the attested Continental Germanic form Timmo. This is of uncertain origin, perhaps a short form of Dietmar. The personal name Timothy was not in use in England until Tudor times, and is therefore not a likely source of this surname, which is medieval in origin.