There are hundreds of thousands of them. Really. According to the newest statistics published by the Ministry of Interior, there are 370 878 unique surnames in use in the Czech Republic. Not all of them are of Czech origin, many of them were brought to Bohemia, Moravia and Silesia in last few decades as people from other countries were moving in (yes, also these surnames are covered by those statistics).
Ministry of Interior publishes the surnames and names statistics every year. These statistics are available on its website, http://www.mvcr.cz/clanek/cetnost-jmen-a-prijmeni-722752.aspx?q=Y2hudW09MQ%3D%3D. There are xls and csv tables which are available for download. Those tables are not too well-arranged, but a group of statistics fans created a website which provides much better overview.
The website was already mentioned on this blog, but I think it's worth mentioning it again. The statistic tables were transformed into maps. These maps show you where the families with the chosen surname are living today. How it works?
There are tens of so called "authorized municipalities" which are responsible for larger area. The surname statistics are published for these authorized municipalities, so it's possible to divide the country into smaller pieces and show where the people with one surname are living. You won't get exact village, but you get at least an idea where to search for relatives, ancestors etc.
This can be, of course, used in case of less common surnames - there are thousands of Novák's, Dvořák's or Novotný's in the Czech Republic, but if your family has, for example, surname Machník (greetings to Stephen in Canada :o)), you'll clearly see what are the possibilities of the family origins. Let's see it in practice.
You have to type the surname you are searching for into the search area (in red circle).
After typing the surname, press Enter or click on Vyhledat (Search) button.
You'll get a map where the density of your surname is shown - the darker the color, the more often is the surname in that area (there are more people with this surname compared to the total number of inhabitants of that "authorized area"). There is a list of the "authorized municipalities" on the left where you see number of people having the surname in the area and density (Každý x-tý) of the surname. Machník surname is present 12 times in Strakonice area and every 7643rd man has this surname.
Příjmení: Machník, počet výskytů 57 v celé ČR. = Surname Machník, 57 occurences in whole Czech Republic.
When you move the mouse pointer above the area, it will show you its name and number of people having the chosen surname.
It's easy to use so don't hesitate to try it!
Tried it - no hits on my surname.ReplyDelete
Charles Vaclav, Florida USA
You have to use diacritics on that website. Your surname was originally "Václav" for sure.Delete
You have a great blog, thank you for putting all this together.
Would you be willing to answer 2 name questions, please?
1. The oldest written American English spelling of our Czech name (from 1882) is BURIJANEK. What is the likely correct Czech spelling with Diacritics?
2. Any thoughts on the meaning of the name? (family legend suggests is is a diminutive for male sheep (little ram)
Thank you for any help you can give
Hello Shelley, I know the answer comes quite late, but it's here...Delete
1. Most probably Buriánek or Burijánek.
2. The surname is derived from first name Burian. St. John Burian was a saint living in 4th century. He and his brother Paul denied to sacrifice to the Roman god Jupiter and were beheaded in 362 AD.
I really appreciate the assistance. Since the 1882 document with Burijanek was a marriage license from the Czech Catholic Church in Chicago and signed by the Czech Priest who founded that church (St. Procopius), I feel confident the name was most likely Burijánek rather than Buriánek. This is very helpful in moving forward with ship passenger lists as there are few Vaclav Burijánek and many Vaclav Burianek emigrants in 1881.
Also, the information on Saint Burian was very interesting and helps puts to bed any connection to the Polish Buran.
I want to add that your assistance was vital.. I would have had no other way to determine the probable correct Czech spelling without your help. I hope in the future when I have the time to continue this family line, I can contract your services in country.
Shelley, just a quick note (I've discovered this blog last week, hence my late response):Delete
Burijánek, or Buriánek is diminutive of Burian (or Burián). The diminutive form of male sheep is Beránek. Both Burian and Beránek are common Czech surnames.
I would think that most Czechs would say that the correct spelling of the diminutive form of "Burian" is Buriánek and not Burijánek, though the latter is more phonetically closer. There are about 6000 people in the Czech Republic with the last name Burian/Burián or the female version thereof, about 2000 with Burianek/Buriánek, but there are NO Burijaneks in the Czech Republic.
Why was your ancestor's name spelled the name in an unusual manner? It may be the same reason as my mother's name was butchered as well: the family name was "Burian", but the birth registrar insisted that according to the grammar rules of Czech language the correct spelling has to be "Buryan." So although prior to her marriage she has always used "Burianová" as her name, on some legal documents it was "Buryanová."
Thank you for this blog. I have gotten 13 hits on my family's surname, all in the Frydek-Mistek region, where my Great Grandmother was born!ReplyDelete
Is there a way to attempt to contact them? Perhaps an online phone book?
Thanks! I tried this for my great grandfather (Vaclav Kostelak) and found nothing and for my great grandmother (Anna Krizek) and found two Krizeks residing in Praha. I am having a very difficult time finding any information on the last name Kostelak. Any info on this name would be greatly appreciated.ReplyDelete
Hi, try Kostelák and Křížek - copy and past the names with diacritics to the website.Delete
Thank you for this information. I found many for my maiden name( Bartl) which is of Austrian/German origin, but very few for my great-great- grandmother's surname, Czerwenka.ReplyDelete
Bartl is my mother's maiden name - where were your Bartls from? For Czerwenka, current form is Červenka.Delete
Thanks for the tip!ReplyDelete
Note that kdejsme.cz has not been updated since 2017, because the Ministry of Interior is no longer authorized to publish the data. kdejsme.cz remains up as it is still useful. Also surname and name data can no longer be downloaded from the Ministry of Interior in .xls or .csv format.ReplyDelete