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Bogdański
Created by Administrator Account in 5/1/2012 12:50:22 PM

 


… I was wondering if you could give me any information on my surname, it is "Bogdanski"? I know some history behind the name, but not much any help would be appreciated.

I'm afraid I can't give you much detailed information, because this is one of many Polish surnames that derive from popular first names, and such surnames tend to be very common and distributed all over Poland, since by their very nature they could develop almost anywhere. Thus in 1990 there were 5,543 Polish citizens named Bogdański. The surname comes from the first name Bogdan, which is a Slavic compound name meaning literally "God-given" (a Slavic equivalent to Hebrew Nathaniel, Greek Theodoros, etc.). Bogdański means literally "of, pertaining to Bogdan," and thus might have originated as a term for "kin of Bogdan," or "person from Bogdanka or Bogdanki [Bogdan's place]," etc. There are several villages by those names, so even if we assume the surname referred to a place rather than just meaning "Bogdan's kin" -- and that's probably not a justifiable assumption, in most cases "Bogdan's kin" probably was the original meaning -- it still doesn't narrow things down much.

With that many Bogdański's, it seems likely the name developed independently in many different places at different times, so there isn't one big Bogdański family, but rather many different ones, and they could have come from anywhere in Poland.

I'm sorry I couldn't be more help, but if it's any help, that's the way it is with, oh, at least 90% of Polish surnames. They just aren't unique enough to offer any really useful leads. Folks often hope I can give them some info based on the name that will help lead them to the place of origin in Poland; I wish it worked that way, but it seldom does.

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

 

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