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Created by Administrator Account in 5/2/2012 11:00:25 AM


… Recently, I have been making genealogical links to the Germanic family Orthner. Would you happen to known the meaning and origin of this surname?

Hans Bahlow's Deutsches Namenlexikon (available in English translation as Dictionary of German Names) mentions Ortner as coming from a root meaning "end," so that names such as Orthmann, Orth, Ohrt, and Ortner usually referred to where a family lived, i. e., "at the end of the village, end of the street." (Orth- and Ort- are the same, older German spelling often put a silent H after T, as in the name of the writer Goethe, more modern spelling drops the H). I'm afraid I don't have any data on how common the name is in Germany (although I'm sure some book must exist that gives that info), but as of 1990 there were 8 Ortner's in Poland, 1 living in Gdańsk province, and 7 living in Opole province, which is in southwestern Poland, in that part of Silesia included in Polish territory after World War II.

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



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