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Króciak - Kruciak - Kruczak - Kruczek
Created by Administrator Account in 8/22/2010 10:28:44 AM

 


... My family name is Kruciak. My Granddad, Anton Kruciak came over from Poland when he was 6. Family settled in Panna Maria, Texas. He died in 1951 or 52 and is buried in the Catholic cemetary at Panna Maria. Apparently the spelling of Kruciak may have been changed upon entry at Galveston. Aside from relatives here in USA I can't find the name on search engines in Poland.

I'm afraid I can't help you too much with this name. I looked in the 10-volume set that lists every surname borne by Poles as of 1990, and it showed a frequency of 0 for Kruciak. What that means is that there was at least one person by that name, but they had incomplete data -- so the name is not completely unknown, but it must be very rare.

I tried looking at names of which that Kruciak could be a variant spelling, but didn't have too much luck there either. There was one person named Króciak, and that would be pronounced exactly the same as Kruciak; it most likely comes from a root meaning "short." Also possible is Kruczak, because the cz is pronounced a lot like ci -- there were 76 Poles names Kruczak, scattered all over the country; this name would come from the root kruczać, "to rumble," or from kruk, "raven." The odd thing is that Kruczak is pretty rare, but Kruczek was the name of 5,088 Poles as of 1990 -- it means "small raven, mole cricket."

So Kruciak is possible, but very rare. The alternate spelling Króciak is the same, possible but rare. If the spelling of the name was changed, it might have been Kruczak or Kruczek originally, those are more common names (especially Kruczek). But the cz to ci change is one I'd expect to happen in Poland -- if it happened in an English-speaking country, the natural change would be to "Kruchak," because that's what the name would sound like.

Copyright © 2000 W.F. Hoffman. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

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