[Ger-Poland-Volhynia] You clod! WAS: Grudzienski Alternate Name

AlbertMuth at aol.com AlbertMuth at aol.com
Tue Sep 23 13:20:04 PDT 2003

Please pardon the pun!  Keep reading, I'll explain.

Fred Hoffmann's "Polish Surnames: Origins and 
Meanings" gives a root GRUD- which gives rise 
to the Polish surnames of Gruda, Grudecki, 
Grudka, Grudowski, Grudziecki, Grudzien.  
The entry does allude to the word meaning 
"December", which Jan Textor just alluded to 
in a message here.  The meaning of the root GRUD- 
(in English) is "clod of earth, frozen ground".

One of the German words given in my German-English/
English-German dictionary for English clod 
is "Klotz".  I do not pretend to be an expert
in Germanic Philology or Germanistik, but I do 
know that the sounds TZ = T in some dialects 
(compare German ZWEI English TWO).  From KLOTZ to 
KLUTH, the distance is not very far.  I am sure 
we must have some German citizens reading our 
list who may have some knowledge of "Dialektologie", 
who can clarify this matter.

For the record, I teach Spanish and am trained 
in comparative Romance linguistics (romanische 

Therefore, Gary, if I ever call you "Gary, 
you clod", you must remember that I am 
addressing you respectfully as a Kluth 
descendant.  :>)

Semantically, the development must run along 
the same lines as from the Dutch noun BOOR = 
'farmer' to English BOORISH, meaning NOT "farmer-
like" (positive qualities) but rather "rustic, 
illiterate, clownish".

True etymologies are not easy to discover.  My 
own surname Muth (which rhymes with Kluth!) 
is APPARENTLY transparent since the German word
MUT means "courage".  However, my family 
tradition is that we originated in Alsace-
Lorraine, where the surname was Demuth.  
I have lost the link to a French website there 
that gave the etymology of local surnames,
including both Muth and Demuth--"courage" had 
nothing to do with the origin and historical
development of the surname. (Sadly, the link 
no longer works)


Just Another Clod
(Al Muth)

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