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Harasim - Harasym - Harazim
Created by Administrator Account in 12/27/2009 12:28:42 PM

 


My last name is Harasim, the only place I’ve seen my name is on a list of awards for Virtuti Militari, no other place. I would greatly appreciate any help.

Harasim is pronounced roughly "hah-RAH-sheem," and it developed as one of several different forms from a first name more common among Ukrainians (possibly also Belarusians) than Poles. Polish name expert Prof. Kazimierz Rymut mentions this name in his book Nazwiska Polakow [The Surnames of Poles], and says it comes ultimately from Greek Gerasimos, from a term meaning "honor, privilege."

As of 1990, according to the best data available (the Slownik nazwisk wspolczesnie w Polsce uzywanych, "Directory of Surnames in Current Use in Poland," which covers about 94% of the population of Poland), there were 1,765 Polish citizens named Harasim, another 144 who bore the spelling Harasym, 511 who spelled it Harazim, and so forth. The largest numbers of those who spelled it Harasim lived in the following provinces: Warsaw 112, Białystok 99, Lublin 165, Siedlce 205, Suwałki 293, and Zamosc 256. Unfortunately I don't have access to further details such as first names or addresses, so I can't tell you how to find that info. This data indicates that, as we'd expect from its origin, the surname tends to be most common in eastern Poland, near the border with Ukraine and Belarus.

So about all this name tells us is that you had an ancestor named Harasim, who was probably of Ukrainian descent. Since Poles and Ukrainians have mixed a great deal over the years, it's not at all odd that this name is found in Poland; but I strongly suspect it's also fairly common in Ukraine. However, I have no sources of data for that country.

Copyright © 2002 W.F. Hoffman. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

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