surnames #lithuania

Judith Singer

Hi - I'm looking for guidance with two questions on surnames based on
others' experiences.
My family name in Lithuania (and probably Belarus before that) was
Charn or Charnoo (meaning black), with the Ch pronounced as in church.

I have assumed that due to the vagaries of spelling and
transliteration, I should also accept spellings that begin with C, H,
K, Kh, Ts, Cz etc. My question is regarding G. I know it was
sometimes used interchangeably with the initial letter H (e,g,, Hirsh
= Girsh, Heiman = Geiman). Because our initial sound was actually Ch
as in church, and because no one whom I know to be in our family has a
name spelled with G, I've been ignoring names that start with G. Any
thoughts on whether I should include them in my searches?

(I should add that I don't have access to any of the authoritative
books on Jewish surnames - I'm disabled and generally spend all my
time in my house.)

Next question: Charn has a consonant, followed by a vowel, followed
by consonants r and n. Should I consider in my search names that are
somewhat similar but follow the pattern Consonant - vowel - r - vowel
- n, such as Khoron? How about Consonant- r - vowel - n, such as

Again, no one whom I know to be in our family has those spellings, but
in the 1858 box taxpayers list, my primary document, there were
Khorons and Khrons in our small town in addition to Charnos, and I
don't know whether excluding them >from the start is distorting my
searches badly.

And very specifically, even though according to the Soundex system,
Charno and Grin sound the same, I refuse to believe the name could
have gotten quite that distorted. Opinions, anyone?

Many thanks for anyone's insight - Judith Singer

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