Re: Given names Chuna/Charles #galicia

Prof. G. L. Esterson <jerry@...>

Barbara Zimmer posted on the Galicia mailing list as follows:

"My uncle was Chuna (which I assume uses the CH as in Chanukah) but he
became Charles in the U.S. In this case it seems his new name was
simply based on the two letters at the beginning of his name, rather
than on the sound of the initial letters as in the original name.

I tried putting typing in Chuna on the left side of the input form
and received no hits. (The choices given are a bit bewildering....)

I received 54 possible responses for Charles and gave up after wading
through about half of them!

Is Chuna a nickname? If so, what name is it derived from?"

The name Chuna actually does appear on the Galicia Given Names Data Base,
along with the US secular name Charles as adopted by many immigrants.

< >

Your problem was that you were using a non-standard transliteration method
to render the Yiddish name Khune in English characters, obtaining
Chuna. CHUNA is the way the Yiddish name would be written using German
characters -- a method which was common some years ago in the US, but is
today considered to be non-standard. And CHUNA therefor does not appear in
the Yiddish nickname list on the GNDB, because it is not the proper
transliterated name.

In establishing a data base such as this one, it is simply not feasible to
include all of the dozens of methods which have been and are used to
transliterate Yiddish names into English characters. The GNDBs on
JewishGen use only the YIVO standard method, and that is the one you should
learn to use.

For those not familiar with this, a table is presented in the JewishGen web
site showing how this standard works.

If you will use the YIVO standard representation of the CHanuka CH
pronunciation, which is KH in YIVO, you will find the name for which you
are searching. But it is better for you to realize that the way _you_
spell names may not be standard or may indeed be otherwise incorrect, and
therefor you should compensate for this by also using the Daitch-Mokotoff
Soundex search (which is an option on the web site). This approach used
with your name CHUNA will give you the results you seek. Try it -- you'll
like it!

Incidentally, I tried searching for CHARLES on the right-hand input form,
and for Galicia, found only 40 "hits" (not 54, as you found), of which the
fourth item gave the result you want -- for the Hebrew name Elchanan. This
set of linked names includes Charles and Chune for the US adopted names,
showing that a number of Galician immigrants to the US adopted the
Anglicized name Chune, based on their Yiddish nickname Chune in Galicia.

Chag sameach,

Prof. G. L. Esterson, Ra'anana, Israel

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