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The Jeff Malka Sephardic Collection

Given Names in the Sephardic Diaspora

The present database covers 1,484 given names, their various spellings and their diminutives born in medieval Spain, in the countries all around the Mediterranean Basin, in the three north-European communities of: Amsterdam, Hamburg and London as well as in the Caribbean.

Each name has the following details provided: the name, its root name if dealing with a variant or diminutive, the gender, the language, the meaning, the place where it was first found and its source, and the diminutives of the root names.

Selection of Names:
The names are Jewish but also vernacular ones especially among women. The male vernacular names are mostly those that were used as “classical” equivalents of Jewish names, such as Albert for Abraham or Maurice/Moritz for Moshe.

Because of the variety of sources, the many languages the names are written in, and the different transliteration rules from an alphabet to another, the number of spellings for a single name is large. The numerous diminutives are the result of the diversity of cultural environments Sephardim lived in.

Gender:
The gender is given because it is not always obvious.

Language:
This is the language in which the name is given. Sometimes names are a compound of two elements from two different languages. In other cases it was impossible to determine the original language as in cases where it could be Spanish or Italian – two languages with very strong Latin roots. In such cases the Language is entered as Spanish or Italian.

Meaning:
A meaning is provided for all the names except eight where it was unclear.
In addition to the strict meaning, the following details were added.

  • For biblical names, the role in the Bible and the exact citation (Book name Chapter : Verse).
  • Many biblical names do not appear transliterated from Hebrew spelled such as Yosef, Shmuel, Yaakov but with their “foreign” spelling such as Joseph, Samuel, Jacob. These last spellings. are the versions found in the Septuagint and Vulgata first translations of the Bible in foreign languages of the original Hebrew names. In the present database, this detail has been shortened to: “Septuagint and Vulgata version of”.
  • Several short explanations about the name choice and/or frequency.
  • Vernacular or Hebrew equivalent, if known
  • “See” reference in order to indicate that the root name is listed.
  • “See also” reference to names with a similar meaning.

Place and Source:
The aim of this place/source list was to cover all the parts of the Sephardic Diaspora. This is why the sources are not only published material but also archival material mostly computerized and posted on www.SephardicGen.com (SG) and even several diminutives current in Morocco and Bulgaria or Serbian based on my personal knowledge.

Once the sources were compiled, there were no planned order for examining the sources and extracting the names from them. A name with a specific spelling as well as the place/source where it was found was entered only once. From that point on, only a different spelling of the already included name, from the same or a different place/source, was entered.

Below is a table of places and sources.

Country/Place

Source  as cited in the DB

Source Language

Kind of Source

Algeria, Bulgaria, Egypt, Erets Israel, Germany (Hamburg), Gibraltar, Greece, Italy, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Portugal, Syria, Tunisia

Ketubot Databases

Hebrew

Databases on SG

Algeria

Livre d'Or (by MJM. Haddeu, Agiers, 1871)

French

Book

Algeria

Marciano. Malkhei Yeshurun (J’lem, 2000)

Hebrew

Book indexed on SG

Algeria, Croatia, Gibraltar,Libya

Tagger and Kerem: Guidebook (Avotay, 2006)

English

Book

Algeria, Constantine

1880 Constantine Voters

French

Database on SG

Bulgaria

Group Passports to Israel

Bulgarian

Archival  material

Bulgaria

Personal Knowledge

 

 

Caribbean

Arbell. Jewish Nation in the Caribbean (J’lem, 2002)

English

Book

Caribbean, Jamaica

Jamaica Tombstones(by Barnett, J’lem ,1997)

English

Book

Egypt

Fargeon. Juifs d'Egypte (Cairo, 1938)

French

Book indexed on SG

Egypt, Alexandria

Alexandria Weddings, 1934

French

Database on SG

Erets Israel, Greece, Italy, Libya, Macedonia, Netherlands (Amsterdam), Yugoslavia (ex)

Deported to Bergen Belsen (Bergen Belse, 1995)

German

Book indexed on SG

Erets Israel

Montefiore censuses 19th cent.

Hebrew

Database (Montefiore Foundation, London)

Germany, Hamburg

Biographisches Lexikon (Hamburg, 2000)

German

Book

Greece, Ioannina

Matsas. Ioannina Jewish Names

Greek

Book

Greece, Salonica

Nehama. Salonique (Salonique, 1835-1978)

French

Book indexed on SG

Greece, Salonica

Recanati. Salonika1943. Jerusalem, 2000

English

Book partially indexed on SG

Lebanon, Beirut

Beirut Cemetery

Arabic/Hebrew

Database on SG

Macedonia, Monastir

Cohen. Monastir (N.Y., 2003)

English

Book

Morocco

Corcos.Prenoms juifs marocains (J’lem 1978).

French

Book

Morocco

Laredo. Noms de Juifs du Maroc (Madrid, 1978)

French

Book

Morocco

Personal Knowledge

 

 

Morocco, Fes

Ovadia, Fas (Jerusalem, 1979).

Hebrew

Book

Netherlands, Amsterdam

Amsterdam Jewish Marriage 1598-1811

Dutch

Book

Serbia

1876 Belgrad Census

Serbian

Database on SG

Serbia

Personal Knowledge

 

 

Spain (medieval)

Sefarad database

Catalan/Spanish

Database on SG

Tunisia, Tunis

Attal. Registres matrimoniaux (J’lem, 1989)

French

Book

Turkey

Galante. Juifs de Turquie Istanbul, 1940)

French

Book indexed on SG

Turkey

Personal knowledge

 

 

Turkey, Istanbul

Istanbul database

Turkish

Database that first on D.Kazez's website, now off-line

UK, London

Bevis Marks Synagogue – Burials (London, 1997)

English

Book

Acknowledgements

We acknowledge the tremendous contributions and lifelong dedication of Mathilde Tagger, z"l who made this index available. For many years, and right until her untimely death, Mathilde Tagger was a very close friend and collaborator with Jeff Malka. Together they worked to promote Sephardic genealogy research and educate the public about its enormous potential.

In addition, we express our grateful appreciation to Dr. Jeff Malka for his monumental ongoing effort to collect and make accessible Sephardic genealogical information, and for his generosity in contributing his extraordinarily valuable collection to JewishGen.


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This collection can be searched by via the JewishGen Sephardic Database, the JewishGen Jeff Malka Collection or the JewishGen Sephardic Collection


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