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Makowski - Sztukowski
Created by Administrator Account in 3/14/2010 8:13:59 AM

 


...Could you tell me the name origins for my great grandparents names? Sztukowski and Makowski...

Names ending in -owski usually derive from a place name the family came from or was otherwise associated with. Typically, those place names end in -ow or -owo, although there are other possibilities. Thus Makowski means "person or family associated with Makow/Makowo"; if the family was noble, they probably owned the estate or village at some time, and if they were peasants, they probably lived and worked there. There are several Maków's and at least one Makowo in Poland, so it's tough to tell which of them your particular Makowski's might have come from. As is usually the case when a surname can come from several different place names, Makowski is a very common name in Poland -- as of 1990 there were 25,340 Poles by that name, with no apparent concentration in any one part of the country. Warsaw province has the most, with 3,155, but virtually every province has at least a few hundred Makowski's living in it. The ultimate root of the name is mak, which means "poppy," so that "Makow" or "Makowo" may have started out meaning "the place with lots of poppies." In some cases it can also come from short forms of first names such as Maksym and Makary, kind of like our English nickname "Mack"; in those cases Makow or Makowo meant "Mak's place." So Makowski means either "person from Mak's place" or "person from the poppy place."

Sztukowski is less common, though still not rare; as of 1990 there were 1,011 Polish citizens named Sztukowski. The largest numbers lived in the provinces of Kalisz (378) and Suwałki (232), with much smaller numbers in virtually every other province. The interesting thing is, I can't find a place named Sztuków or Sztukowo or even Sztuki on the map, which surprises me. Of course, there could be several little villages by this name, too small to show up on maps or in gazetteers, or there may be one or more places that used to have this name and changed it, or were absorbed into other communities -- since surnames typically originated several centuries ago, a lot can change and make it hard to find the place referred to. The ultimate root of the name is sztuka, "piece, part," from German Stueck.

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

 

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