Onomastic – Part 2: Examples for family names

Some surnames of the family tree Reichling-Dureinare listed here with their original meaning. Information of this kind will be find in many books, and many sources exist also on the Internet. The following list was fed from &gt;<em>Duden: Familiennamen – Herkunft und Bedeutung</em>. Von Rosa Kohlheim und Volker Kohlheim. Mannheim, Leipzig, Wien, Zürich: Dudenverlag 2000.&lt;

Whether the meanings of the surnames from this book are the perfect solution, is partly rather doubtful. Thus, it is known, for example, that origin names end preferentially on -er. Therefore, the explanation of the surname Reichling, which should have originated supposedly from the name of a Bavarian village, is presumably incorrect. Should it be this origin name, the surname would be rather Reichlinger.


Old German writing

The German writing is known since the 16th century. The concept “old German writing” is, actually, a collective term for many fonts up to the 20th century. Basically must be distinguished in block letters and cursive.

Block letters were, e. g., Schwabacher or Fraktur. Both are so-called broken writings with which the curves of a letter have broken all or partly (clearly visible changes of course with the line guidance). Schwabacher was from the late 15. till the middle of the 16th century the prevailing German writing. Fraktur took her place and remained till the 20th century.



Bellheim in the today’s southern Palatinate is a central place for the family history of both families, Reichling and Durein. Both families lived (and runners of the line even revive there today) on her peregrination there. The conjugal union in the second half of the 20th century also was not the first meeting between the both. Both families lived on beginning up to the ending of the 18th century at the same time in Bellheim. In the church register Bellheim a certain Johannes Jacob Durein is mentioned as a witness of Johannes Jacob Bernhard Reichling and his wife Margaretha in 1749. This Durein is a direct forefather, while this Reichling is not related in direct line.


Onomastic – Part 1: Family name

Nowadays the family name or the surname of a person is a certain component of his name and points basically to the affiliation to a family. The surname can change in the course of the life of a person. Examples for this are an adoption, marriage and separation.

Surnames have developed from the epithets. Epithets were awarded at first individually and not left bequeath. They called special qualities of a person, his origin, his occupation, were, for example, also joke names and nicknames or even day names or names of the month, they come from foreign languages or religions. Martinus Rot had, for example, remarkable red hair, Johannes Wagner the suitable occupation. Of course epithets did not stop at higher circles. Charlemagne or Heinrich the Seafarer are exemplarily mentioned at this point. Epithets already existed at early Roman times.



During the past years there was to read a lot about my search for my forefathers on different homepages. In spite of the possibility to contact me by email and to exchange information, I lacked a little bit the “quickie”. Maybe this blog cuts the knots, the exchange rises and is more promising therefore. Primarily I will talk here about names and families of my family tree. Sometimes one comes to a dead end with every line of his family tree and could incredibly despair then. I despair of some dead ends for some years, I hope I will get some hints from the discussions and comments here. Of course primarily I will be the one who write these articles here, but space for comments is given. Therefore, it is worthwhile to visit this page more often.