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Gruszczyński - Łukaszewski
Created by Administrator Account in 9/27/2010 8:44:09 AM

 


… What can you tell me about the Lukaszewski?? I was told it was "high ranking". Nobility maybe. I have a Jacob born 1875. Don't know where for sure. Record said Berlin Germany but he must have been in Poland sometime. Also Gruszczynski?

Łukaszewski is like most names ending in -owski or -ewski, which usually began as a reference to a connection between a person or family and a place with a similar name. Names ending in -ski are adjectives, meaning "of, from, pertaining to X" where X is the first part of the name. We would expect Łukaszewski to refer to a place with a name like Łukaszew, Łukaszewo, Łukaszów, something like that. If the family was noble, the name was probably that of their estate or a village they owned; if the family was non-noble, the name was probably that of the village they lived in, came from, traveled to, etc. The place names themselves mean "the place of Lucas" (Łukasz is the Polish form of "Luke" or "Lucas"); so Łukaszewski can be broken down to Łukasz- + -ew- + -ski, "one of or from the [place] of Lucas." In some cases it might also just mean "kin of Lucas," but more often it refers to a place.

Unfortunately there are several places in Poland with names that qualify, including Łukaszów in Legnica province, Łukaszówka in Chełm province, Łukaszewo in Włocławek province, and Łukaszewice in Wrocław province. Most of these are in territory that used to be ruled by the Germans (i. e., northern or western Poland), and as you say, a Łukaszewski may have ended up in Berlin at some point, but the family wouldn't have gotten that name unless they were of Polish ethnic origin, so at some point the trail should lead back somewhere in Poland. But the surname itself doesn't give us enough information to let us specify which of the places named (or more too small to show up on maps) the surname originally referred to.

Łukaszewski is a pretty common name, as of 1990 there were 8,690 Polish citizens by this name, living in sizable numbers all over the country.

Gruszczyński is also common, there were 8,918 Poles by that name. The ultimate root is the word gruszka, "pear," but the surname probably comes from a place name such as Gruszczyn (at least 4 of those exist) or Gruszczyno (at least 1) -- which, in turn, would mean "place of the pears or pear-trees." So the surname means "one from Gruszczyn or Gruszczyno" = "one from the place of the pears."

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

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