The French form of the byname of a character in the New Testament, Mary Magdalene ‘Mary of Magdala’. Magdala was a village on Lake Galilee, a few miles north of Tiberias. The woman ‘which had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities’ (Luke 8:2) was given this name in the Bible to distinguish her from other bearers of the very common name Mary. It was widely accepted in Christian folk belief that she was the same person as the repentant sinner who washed Christ's feet with her tears in the previous chapter (Luke 7), but there is no support in the text for this identification.
French: topographic name for someone living among rocks, from the fused preposition and definite article des + the plural of French roche ‘rock’, or a habitational name from any of several places named with this word. In North America, this name has been confused with Laroche, and translated as Rock.