Jewish Names > Germany and France, 10th-13th Centuries

Names from Hebrew Chronicles of the 10th to 13th Centuries

by Julie Stampnitzky

The following names appear in Hebrew chronicles describing events in western Europe during the 10th to 13th centuries, in particular the Crusades and other attacks on the Jewish communities of Germany and France. The style of the accounts is rather formal, in keeping with the solemnity of the subject matter. Respectful titles are prefixed to the names of most of the individuals mentioned here. Diminutive forms of names rarely appear. Certain occupations are mentioned, such as rabbi, cantor, and community leader, while more mundane occupations do not appear.

The overwhelming majority of the men have names that are Hebrew or Biblical. (Two names in particular, Yitzchak and Shmuel, are amazingly popular.) Perhaps some of the men were also known by vernacular names, but the authors did not see fit to mention them. The women's names are more evenly divided between on the one hand Hebrew or Biblical names and on the other names that derive from the local vernacular languages.

Full names

Given names

For each name, the number of occurrences has been indicated. The first number refers to the number of instances in which the name is the given name of the person referenced, while the number after the plus sign, where present, refers to occurrences in the context of bynames of relationship.

Feminine Given Names
Beila 1
Belet 1
Chana 3
Doltza 1
Esther 0+1
Guta 1
Guthela 1
Madrona 2
Matrona 1
Minna 2
Pultzelina 1
Rachel 4
Rivkah 2
Saris 1
Scolaster 1
Shluida 1
Shoinlin 1
Shonlin 1
Tziporah 1
Yehudis 1
Yeintil 1
Masculine Given Names
Aharon 1+1
Alechsandri 1
Asher 1+5
Avraham 11+5
Baruch 6+1
Binyamin 1
Chayim 4
Chelbo 1+1
Chiyya 0+1
Chizkiyah 1
Chizkiyahu 1
Daniel 0+1
David 4+4
Efrayim 2
Elazar 2+2
Eliezer 4+2
Elyakim 0+4
Gedalyah 1+2
Gershom 3+1
Hillel 1+1
Kalonymos 5+3
Komlin 1
Levi 2
Machir 0+1
Meir 4+3
Menachem 4+3
Meshulam 2+4
Mordechai 5+3
Moshe 12+7
Na'aman 0+1
Nasan 4+4
Natronai 1+1
Nechemiah 1
Nesanel 0+1
Peter 2
Reuven 0+1
Sechok 1
Shabsai 2
Shem Tov 1
Shemaryah 1
Shemaryahu 1
Shimon 2+1
Shimshon 4+4
Shlomo 11+3
Shmuel 17+10
Shneiur 2
Simchah 1+1
Sulam 0+1
Tamar 1+1
Uri 2
Yaakov 7+6
Yakar 1+1
Yechiel 4+1
Yehoshua 1
Yehudah 14+5
Yekusiel 3+3
Yelivah 1
Yitzchak 27+14
Yoel 3+1
Yom Tov 1+1
Yosef 10+8
Yuda 2
Zelekman 1
Zuiskind 1

Habermann, A. M. (Ed.), Sefer Gezerot Ashkenaz v'Tzarfat [The Book of the Tragedies of Germany and France] (Jerusalem: Tarshish Books, 1945). [in Hebrew]
___, Sefer Zechirah: Selichot v'Kinot [The Book of Memoirs: Penitential Prayers and Lamentations of Rabbi Ephraim bar Jacob of Bonn] (Jerusalem: Bialik Institute, 1970). [in Hebrew]

Note: The primary sources in which I found these names were written in Hebrew letters. I have tried to represent how these names would have been pronounced, but I may have erred in transliterating, since the Hebrew text was written without vowels. My transliterations are not the only possible way to spell these names; e.g either Ephraim or Efrayim could be equally valid.
Where the text had an abbreviation, I have included the completion of the word or phrase in brackets, e.g. b[en].

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