Friday, September 7, 2012

Female surnames

Czech language, as other Slavic languages, has its specialities which are not too easy to understand to people who are not used to this kind of languages. One of these specialities are female surnames. I promised to write an article about them...

Czech female surnames are derived from the male form of the surname. English or German speaking countries are using the same form for both males and females, but Slavic languages are different.

Most common change is simply adding -ová to the end of male form of the surname. This is used in case when the surname ends with a consonant. Here are some examples:
Novák - Nováková
Dvořák - Dvořáková
Peták - Petáková
Famfulík - Famfulíková

If the surname ends with the vowel -a, the vowel is eliminated and -ová is added. Examples follow:
Rybička - Rybičková
Humpola - Humpolová
Liška - Lišková
Růžička - Růžičková

Last case where -ová is used is eliminating of the vowel -e- at the end of the surname. If the surname ends with -ek, -e is eliminated and -ová is added. It's quite complicated to explain, but the examples show it quite well:
Janáček - Janáčková
Pekárek - Pekárková
Nosek - Nosková


Another example is the case when the surname ends with the vowel -ý. This vowel is replaced by the female form ending with -á. So:
Krátký - Krátká
Černý - Černá
Bezruký - Bezruká
Toužimský - Toužimská

You can see one more case in those registries which are written in German. There is usually -in added to the male version to express that the person is female. Here are examples:
Kout - Koutin
Čermák - Čermákin
Svoboda - Svobodin

6 comments:

  1. thanks blanka,
    beatiful blog.
    martin balik

    ReplyDelete
  2. Nice to see you blogging! Hope all is well with the new baby and your family. Take Care!!
    Judy from Canada

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thank you for doing the Blog. I had traced my father's family back to Blatna, CZ & Kocelovive, CZ in the 1880s. Perhaps I can gain some insights or directions from your postings.

    Charles Valav, Florida USA

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hi Charles, both Blatna (parish Blatna) and Kocelovice (parish Lnare) registries are available online in the Trebon archives on http://digi.ceskearchivy.cz - you'll be probably able to find your ancestors there. Good luck!

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  5. Thanks Blanka! I appreciate the article!

    John Devroy, De Pere, Wisconsin

    ReplyDelete
  6. Is there any standard convention for entering the family names of women in genealogical databases or programs? It seems that most people enter the names of both male and female children as the same, for example Hinková = Hinek. This is also what I have done. But, I always have the question as to whether I should enter the female children as, for example, Hinková.

    ReplyDelete