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Created by Administrator Account in 3/14/2010 5:20:03 AM


... I understand my family name Mosiniak is a rather uncommon name in most places in the world. Can you tell me something about it ? Or a place to look? I have read your book on surnames.

Mosiniak is not an overly common name in Poland, only some 161 Polish citizens bore this name as of 1990. The root of the name is Mos-, which is like a short form or nickname for such first names as Mojsław (literally "my glory") and Mojzesz (Moses). Poles often took the first couple of sounds from a name, dropped the rest, and added suffixes. Thus Mos- could arise from Mojslaw or Moses, then Mosin would mean "of, belonging to Mos)," then -iak probably means "son of." So to whatever extent you can translate the name, it would mean something like "son of, kin of Mojslaw or Moses." That may seem kind of fuzzy, but names are that way -- what does "Ted" mean? It's just a short form of a name, "Theodore," which did originally mean something ("gift of God" in Greek), but by the time the nickname "Ted" arose no one associated any meaning with it any longer. Same with this Polish name: it just means "son of Mos, son of Mosin, Mosin's kin."

There is also the possibility it might refer to a place: -iak with a form of a personal name usually means "son of," but sometimes it's use with place names. There is a village in Poznan province named Mosina, I can't rule out the chance that Mosiniak started out meaning "person from Mosina." The chances are good enough to be worth mentioning.

Copyright © 1998 W.F. Hoffman. All rights reserved. Used by permission.




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