Re: origin of family name AMSTERDAM #general

Roger Lustig <julierog@...>

Hamster--> Amster? Can't say I've ever encountered "Hamster" used as a
compliment. "Hamstern"="to hoard." I bet "Amsel" (blackbird) is just
as likely. As you suggest, that could be a kinnui for Asher.

Oh, and Glogau ins't quite in Posen; it's one of the two ancient Jewish
cities of Silesia, i.e., where the Jews weren't expelled in the 15thC.
(Zuelz is the other.) You can see Posen province >from Glogau on a clear
day, though.

Roger Lustig
Princeton, NJ wrote:

==Lars Menk lists only the city of Amsterdam as the source for the Amsterdam
name in his dictionary of German Jewish surnames. He lists a nunmber of
differeent families in Frankfurt/Mainin 1679, 1686, and 1710, also in Friedberg
which is near Frankfurt, and in Glogau which, I think, is in Posen

==BenZion Kaganoff does not list Amsterdam but lists Amster, which he says
is derived >from the German for hamster and may be a name for "a diligent,
industrious individual."

==I speculate the name may also be an "elaboration" of the German-Jewish
first name Anselm/Amsel/Anschel which is a kinnuy for Ascher (one of the 12
tribes). This would be similar to the origin of Berlin/er in many cases, >from
Issachar (a tribe) to Beer (kinnuy) to Berlin, an important city.

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