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The "Hugues hypothesis" argues that the name was derived by association with Hugues Capet, king of France, who reigned long before the Reformation.
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In the present day, most Huguenots have been assimilated into various societies and cultures, but remnant communities of Camisards in the Cévennes, members of the United Protestant Church of France, French members of the largely German Protestant Reformed Church of Alsace and Lorraine, as well as the Huguenot diaspora in England and Australia all still retain their beliefs and Huguenot designation.
A term used originally in derision, Huguenot has unclear origins. The nickname may have been a combined reference to the Swiss politician Besançon Hugues (died 1532) and the religiously conflicted nature of Swiss republicanism in his time, using a clever derogatory pun on the name Hugues by way of the Dutch word Huisgenoten (literally housemates), referring to the connotations of a somewhat related word in German Eidgenosse (Confederates as in "a citizen of one of the states of the Swiss Confederacy").
Louis XIV claimed the French Huguenot population of 800,000 to 900,000 individuals was reduced to 1,000 or 1,500 individuals; a huge overestimate, although dragonnades were certainly the most devastating event for the minority.
Nevertheless, a tiny minority of Huguenots remained and faced continued persecution under Louis XV.