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Archiver > LITHUANIA > 2002-03 > 1015707967


From: David Zincavage <>
Subject: Re: [LITHUANIA-L] German/Baltic Surnames
Date: Sat, 09 Mar 2002 13:06:14 -0800
References: <14c.a27db95.29bae691@aol.com><001701c1c72b$d0fd8000$210110ac@THINKPAD><000c01c1c77f$09997330$0247380a@mttroy.com><006901c1c78f$52996580$210110ac@THINKPAD> <3C8A64BC.60AD733B@compuserve.de><001f01c1c7a7$b048a020$210110ac@THINKPAD> <3C8A726B.847287BB@compuserve.de>


I think that Lithuanians living in German-speaking neighborhoods germanized
their names a bit, for instance. In the -aitis ending case, just droppng
the Lithuanian case ending.

There was a fair bit of German and Lithuanian intermarriage in the border
areas. And Germans did sometimes settle in Lithuania. The Platers and
Landsbergis families are both descended from the Crusading Orders.

I did not say Germans assumed Lithuanan patronymic endings, though in some
cases where Germans settled in Lithuanian speaking areas, I expect they did.
I think I have seen such forms as Kuncaitis, Kunz _+ the Lithuanian
patronymic suffix.

The vanquished Prussians have nothing to do with surnames in the last few
centuries, and neither German noble families and Lithuanian noble families
on the one hand, or humble German peasants and humble Lithuanian peasants
necessarily subscribed to theories of Teutonic racial superiority. Actually
Germans and Lithuanians typically have a lot in common temperamentally
(punctual, orderly, fussy, up tight) and culturally, and tend to get along
rather well.

The immigrant Lithuanians often preferred to attend German Catholic churches
in the early period before Lithuanian parishes were created. They also
often preferred to vote Republican (with the Pennsylvania Germans), rather
than democrat (with the Irish). And Lithuanian families often had extended
family relationships with PA German farmers with whom they hunted.

----- Original Message -----
From: "Paul Milkaitis" <>
To: <>
Sent: Saturday, March 09, 2002 12:36 PM
Subject: Re: [LITHUANIA-L] German/Baltic Surnames


>
>
> David Zincavage schrieb:
>
> > Vanagas found 5 Voveraitis [4 Kretinga, 1 Pagegai] > from Lith.
_voveris_
> > "squirrel" or perhaps from Wawr- remnant of Polish: Wawyzyniec =
Lawrence.
> > -----------------------------
>
> But why do you think the Gemans -- of all people the GERMANS -- would
assume the name-endings of a vanquished people?
> Paul Milkaitis
> -------------------------------------------------
>
> >
> > ----- Original Message -----
> > From: "Paul Milkaitis" <>
> > To: <>
> > Sent: Saturday, March 09, 2002 11:38 AM
> > Subject: [LITHUANIA-L] German/Baltic Surnames
> >
> > > Right, David. One sees names such as "Naujokat" over here from
> > time-to-time. When I ask people with those types of names where the name
> > came from, they invariably
> > > say West Prussia, or simply "the Baltic area".
> > >
> > > Also, I found the same to be true in cases of names ending in -eit.
My
> > brother read in an US newspaper that the current mayor of Berlin, Klaus
> > Wowereit, claims to
> > > be Lithuanian! Evidently his parents fled from West Prussia near the
end
> > of WW II. The same article claimed that ca. 10% (if I recall
> > correctly...could it be that
> > > high?) of Germans originate from the Baltic area.
> > >
> > > We know that the original Prussians were Balts who were assimilated by
the
> > Germanic tribes. I wonder if the introduction of these Lithuanian
endings
> > means that the
> > > Germans took on the names (or at least the endings) of the people they
> > assimilated.
> > > As a side note, not a few Germans have what appear to be Latinized
names
> > such as "Ursinius", which sometimes resemble Lithuanian names. I wonder
if
> > its possible to
> > > "undo" these Latinizations in order to get back to the original
Germanic
> > or Baltic names.
> > > Paul Milkaitis
> > > ----------------------------------------
> > > David Zincavage schrieb:
> > >
> > > > In Western Samogitia in particular, the German linguistic influence
> > commonly
> > > > turns -aitis surname into -at surnames.
> > > >
> > > > Pezsulis or Pessulis?> Might be Pez^elis [6 examples] or Pec^iulis
> > [252].
> > > > Because it is so much more common, I tend to vote for the latter.
It
> > is, of
> > > > course, a patronymic, incorporating one of those so commonly
encountered
> > > > Lithuanian -ul diminutives, from the German Petsch, a hypocoristic
form
> > of
> > > > Peter.
> > > >
> > > > Petraitis and Pec^iulis are clearly cognate, and although this
seems
> > > > unlikely, it is not wholly impossible: they could conceivably really
> > just be
> > > > different versions of exactly the same surname.
> > > >
> > > > ----- Original Message -----
> > > > From: "Therese Weitz" <>
> > > > To: <>
> > > > Sent: Saturday, March 09, 2002 7:28 AM
> > > > Subject: Re: [LITHUANIA-L] Re: surnames
> > > >
> > > > > Could the Americanized name Petrat be from the name Petraitis? My
> > uncle's
> > > > last name was Petrat, but I know they were from Lithuania.
> > > > >
> > > > > David, do you have anything listed for Pezsulis or Pessulis?
> > > > >
> > > > > Therese
> > > > >
> > > > >
> > > > >
> > > > >
> > > > > ----- Original Message -----
> > > > > From: David Zincavage
> > > > > To:
> > > > > Sent: Friday, March 08, 2002 11:32 PM
> > > > > Subject: Re: [LITHUANIA-L] Re: surnames
> > > > >
> > > > >
> > > > > Yes, it is: 658 examples circa 1989.
> > > > > ----- Original Message -----
> > > > > From: <>
> > > > > To: <>
> > > > > Sent: Friday, March 08, 2002 8:16 PM
> > > > > Subject: Re: [LITHUANIA-L] Re: surnames
> > > > >
> > > > >
> > > > > > My grandfather's last name was Kazlauskas. I remember you're
> > saying
> > > > this
> > > > > is
> > > > > > very common. His wife's maiden was Petraitis. Is this
surname
> > also
> > > > very
> > > > > > common.
> > > > > > Susan
> > > > > >
> > > > > >
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> > > > >
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