This name derives from the Proto-Celtic form of the name “*Toranos”, meaning “thunder”. In present day the Welsh “taranu” and “taran” means “to thunder, thunder” (Breton: taraniñ / taran). In Celtic mythology Taranis was the god of thunder worshipped essentially in Gaul, Gallaecia, Britain and Ireland, but also in the Rhineland and Danube regions, amongst others. Taranis, along with Esus and Toutatis as part of a sacred triad, was mentioned by the Roman poet Lucan in his epic poem Pharsalia as a Celtic deity to whom human sacrificial offerings were made. Taran son of Ainftech was a King of the Picts (692–96) according to the Pictish king-lists. In some instances, the surname may be a variant of the French name "Taurin", which derived from the Latin "taurus", bull, and would have been a nickname given to a large, aggressive man. The creation of surnames from nicknames was a common practice in the Middle Ages, and many modern-day surnames are from medieval nicknames referring to personal characteristics.