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Naming Conventions #names


Carl Kaplan
 

Two questions regarding naming conventions:

In the late 1800s, if paternal and maternal grandfathers were both deceased when the first son was born, would he have been named after the paternal grandfather, or was it a choice?

When did the practice start for using the first letter of a deceased relative's name for a child, rather than the whole name? Example being naming a child Carl, after his grandfather Charles?

Thank you.
--
Carl Kaplan

KAPLAN Minsk, Belarus
EDELSON, EDINBURG Kovno, Lithuania
HOFFERT, BIENSTOCK< BIENENSTOCK Kolbuszowa, Galicia
STEINBERG, KLINGER, WEISSBERG, APPELBERG Bukaczowce, Galicia


Alan Greenberg
 

At 2020-09-21 08:36 AM, Carl Kaplan via groups.jewishgen.org wrote:
Two questions regarding naming conventions:

In the late 1800s, if paternal and maternal grandfathers were both
deceased when the first son was born, would he have been named after
the paternal grandfather, or was it a choice?
There is no universal rule that I am aware of. He could have been
named after either, or both.


When did the practice start for using the first letter of a deceased
relative's name for a child, rather than the whole name? Example
being naming a child Carl, after his grandfather Charles?
In my experience, that is not what happened. The child was given the
same Hebrew name as the ancestor, but with a different English name,
which typically matched in the first letter. So in my case, I was
named after my GGF Avraham (who never had an "English" name) but
since biblical names were not in vogue when I was born, I was named
Alan. Charles is a curious name with those bearing the name having
many Hebrew names, but the most common is Chaim.

Alan Greenberg
Montreal, Canada


Sally Bruckheimer
 

"In the late 1800s, if paternal and maternal grandfathers were both deceased when the first son was born, would he have been named after the paternal grandfather, or was it a choice?"

You don't say where they were from. In Western Europe and among Sephardi, the paternal grandfather, living or dead, is the one the first son is named for. In Eastern Europe (and among those from Eastern Europe who fled west), either or both, as long as they were dead. Maybe a double name including both.

Sally Bruckheimer
Princeton, NJ


Susan&David
 

See: Given names here. Explains a lot about naming traditions.
https://www.jewishgen.org/InfoFiles/GivenNames/slide1.html

David Rosen
Boston, MA


On 9/21/2020 8:36 AM, Carl Kaplan via groups.jewishgen.org wrote:
Two questions regarding naming conventions:

In the late 1800s, if paternal and maternal grandfathers were both deceased when the first son was born, would he have been named after the paternal grandfather, or was it a choice?

When did the practice start for using the first letter of a deceased relative's name for a child, rather than the whole name? Example being naming a child Carl, after his grandfather Charles?

Thank you.
--
Carl Kaplan

KAPLAN Minsk, Belarus
EDELSON, EDINBURG Kovno, Lithuania
HOFFERT, BIENSTOCK< BIENENSTOCK Kolbuszowa, Galicia
STEINBERG, KLINGER, WEISSBERG, APPELBERG Bukaczowce, Galicia


karen.silver@juno.com
 

The choice of whom to name a child after has always been made by the parents regardless of who died in what order.  And it was not required that children be named after deceased grandparents.  That was an honor given by the parents based on the regard they felt toward the deceased relative.  And I should add that it was a joint decision.
 
When naming a child born in the US after someone who died, my maternal grandparents who were married in Russia chose American names closest to the Yiddish or Hebrew names of the deceased. However, as these first generation children grew up, they Americanized their names.  For example, my mother's sister Bessie became Bernice. My paternal grandparents who were married here, Americanized their children's first names when they were born and gave them Hebrew names that were used for religious ceremonies.  My father was named  Bernard Howard after his grandfather Baruch Hirsh but went by the name Howard.
 
This naming convention of using the first letter of the deceased's name has continued and evolved further.  Some people are named after more than one person using their first and middle names and others are named after someone using just their middle name.


Rodney Eisfelder
 

Carl,
You asked "When did the practice start for using the first letter of a deceased relative's name for a child, rather than the whole name? Example being naming a child Carl, after his grandfather Charles?"
You picked a curious example, since they are the same name, one being the German version, the other the French. This was brought home to me when I saw Karl Marx's registration papers from his stay in Brussels in 1846 - his name is clearly shown as Charles Marx. Karl was born in 1818. The family surname came from his grandfather, who was named Mordechai, not Marx.

My great-grandfather's brother William, was born in Bamberg, Germany in 1837. He was either named after William IV who died the same year, or after his grandfather Wolf, who died in 1832.

The answer to your question will depend on where the grandparent died, where the grandchild was born, and the level of cultural assimilation of the parents.

I hope this helps,
Rodney Eisfelder
Melbourne, Australia


Jill Whitehead
 

My great grandfather was called Nathan Abrahams and he came to Manchester, UK in 1867 from Suwalki town in NE Poland. He was born Chackiel Ceglarski but dropped the Ceglarski in favour of his patronymic Abraham or Abram (his father's name).  He was also known as Casper by his family (a variation of Chackiel ) in Britain and Charles by his brothers in the USA. His Hebrew name was Ezekiel. He called his first son Abraham Abrahams or Abrams after his father. 

I have no idea where the name Nathan came from, but it only appeared when he came to Britain (as far as I am aware), but he had nine children (8 born in Manchester), and his eldest grandsons were variously called Nathan or Neville, but several had the middle name Casper.

A lot of first sons were called Abraham by different parts of my family, but they were often known by their second name e.g. Abraham Harris,  or these Abraham's became variously Arthur, Albert or Arnold.

Jill Whitehead, Surrey, UK


Roberta Sheps
 

My father had a friend named Haskel Masters in Saskatchewan whose name had
been Chatskiel. The story is his first grade teacher made the change,
although I think of it more like an adaptation. I don't know what
"Masters" had been. My grandfather's first grade teacher, according to what
he told my mother, (my grandfather, not the teacher) imposed Charles on him,
rather than allowing him to use his original name which was Efraim, which
she thought was absurd.

Roberta Sheps
Colchester, UK
Born in Winnipeg