From an old Germanic personal name, usually said to be from man ‘man’ + fred, frid ‘peace’. However, it is more likely that the first element was magin ‘strength’ (the usual Norman form being Mainfred) or manag ‘much’. This name was in use among the Normans, who introduced it to Britain. However, it did not become part of the common stock of English given names, and was reintroduced from Germany in the 19th century. It was a traditional name among the Hohenstaufens, and was borne by the last Hohenstaufen king of Sicily (1258–66), who died in battle against papal forces at Benevento. The name was also used by Byron for the central character in his poetic drama Manfred (1817), a brooding outcast, tormented by incestuous love for his half-sister.