[Ger-Poland-Volhynia] naming patterns
Spaghettitree at aol.com
Spaghettitree at aol.com
Sat Dec 19 08:45:36 PST 2009
Rose-Marie - The experiences of Bronwyn and the sites she has given you are
excellent - and there are many, many publications on the etymology and
meaning of names, Germanic and otherwise. Like everything else, some are more
accurate and detailed than others. We just cannot accept names as they
are today and declare there's only one correct spelling/meaning/family for
each of them. The concept of "correct spellings" is a modern one. They
are collectible, rather than correctable. They vary, sometimes
drastically, from time to time over many centuries and place to place and culture to
culture - most emphatically when they emigrate to a place where their
native language is not understood, and is in fact the subject of derision.
There always have been people who have changed their birth names altogether,
legally or not. Maybe they hated the names dished out to them - maybe
their spouses changed them to be more
"socially acceptable" - maybe some lied about their birth names to the
authorities, so a death certificate indicates a different name from a birth
certificate. Maybe the military arbitrarily invents a junior where none
exists. All four of those applied in my family of four siblings. In the
case of Germanic names, among others, a given name or surname is often the
subject, all by itself, of extreme (and stupid) intolerance. That applies
to me, too, on top of all the sneezing attempts to pronounce it. My life
would have been different, I think, had I been allowed to choose my own
name - interesting question, hmmmm?
One good thing about genealogy, and these message boards, is that
discussions between people of all levels of expertise are encouraged, wherever they
may be, and by that one gains knowledge and insight, and one hopes,
It does get complicated, so it's quite all right to ask, and keep asking,
as you go along. We're all in this boat together (perhaps many oars are
better than one?).
As Bronwyn knows, names are a favorite subject of mine, and utterly
fascinating. So keep hunting!
T. Maureen Schoenky
In a message dated 12/19/2009 2:11:26 A.M. Pacific Standard Time,
bronklimach at gmail.com writes:
Naming patterns can give pointers, but are far from any kind of proof
There are some well known articles on the topic:
I know one 1800s generation of my German ancestors (near Prenzlau)
names every son Johann xxxx while the daughters are Johanna yyyy.
It's pretty obvious they are going to be called by another of their
Christian names (Rufname).
It is also not uncommon to have 3 or 4 Christian names. One of my
ancestors appears on various documents under any one of her four given
names, with the surname's spelling varying wildly (e.g. Johns, Toms,
Naming patterns might give you some clues and it is good to know about
them, but you will need to keep any eye on everyone in the correct
location whose surname resembles the one in which you are interested.
On Sat, Dec 19, 2009 at 4:10 AM, F&RM Haddad <farose at gmail.com> wrote:
> I've been hearing a lot of late about determining naming patterns, and
> help that can be in genealogical research. Does anyone know if there were
> naming patterns generally used among the Germans - either in Poland or
> Volhynia? (And for me - Wuerttemberg, Germany). Where does one find out
> about naming patterns, (serves me right for being timid about asking
> attend lectures/seminars).
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