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What is the Polish equivalent name to Walter?


esensky 1 | 2
6 Feb 2021 #1
Is it Wojciech? That's what an internet search turned up. Are there any other derivations? I'm looking for a man in my family history named Walter Kosiba. While I've found many Walter Kosib's on various genealogy sites, I haven't found the right one. I'm thinking he changed his name to Walter from his original polish name when he immigrated to the U.S. around 1904. Appreciate the help.
jon357 69 | 19,390
6 Feb 2021 #2
Is it Wojciech?

There's also Waldemar. Also, there's an obscure (very obscure) Polish name Walcerz, a direct equivalent to Walter, however it's very out of use.

Of course he could have been called Walter; not everyone in Poland has always had a Polish first neme. He may also have changed it to Walter form something that sounded completely different.
Miloslaw 13 | 4,062
6 Feb 2021 #3
@esensky

There is also Walerian which is shortened to Walerek.
OP esensky 1 | 2
6 Feb 2021 #4
@jon357
This is very helpful. Thank you
Looker - | 1,114
7 Feb 2021 #5
Some people with the Polish name Władysław, who moved to the States, changed their name for Walter.
jon357 69 | 19,390
7 Feb 2021 #6
Walter.

Walter may have been his name anyway, or he may have changed it from something entirely different. Or even Wlodimierz.
DanK
23 Feb 2021 #7
The name Wladislaw is what I've seen mostly changed to Walter. I had a great grandfather who did this. Note: the "l" after the W in Wladislaw actually should have a Polish "diacritical mark" in Polish use. It would be a tiny slanted mark, a little slash right at the middle. This would be important in Polish records. The Polish alphabet has both L and this other letter. It has a very slight "w" sound when pronouncing it. And W has a V sound. There is no V in Polish alphabet. Russian does have a V; you will also see Ladislav or Ladislaw.

Can you give me some details on this Walter Kosiba who you are trying to find? Maybe I can find something. Thanks.

Looked in #5 reply above has it exactly right Wladislaw with the mark
johnny reb 32 | 6,751
23 Feb 2021 #8
I thought Walter in Polish sounded something like "Vashoo" ?
DanK
23 Feb 2021 #9
Johnny Reb, That sounds like some sort-of nickname, but with that "V" sound, I think you are on the right track

As far as I know, there is no direct Walter equivalent. But as I said I have seen it many times being used for Wladislaw, Ladislav, Ladislaw
johnny reb 32 | 6,751
23 Feb 2021 #10
Well I have two older Polish friends from different families with the name Walter and their families call them something like Vahjoo, Vahgoo, Vashoo ?
DanK
23 Feb 2021 #11
Johnny Reb, you definitely have something there. I'm going to have to remember this. Thanks. As far as "esensky"'s search, I'm hoping he can give us some more information. Maybe we can find something. Plus, I'm wondering what he has tried to find. That 1904 immigration is good because there should be some good records on that.
jon357 69 | 19,390
23 Feb 2021 #12
Vahjoo

Władziu.

This would be important in Polish records.

It doesn't make that difference, since it isn't an either/or.
DanK
23 Feb 2021 #13
jon357 -Thank you!
pawian 187 | 17,481
5 Apr 2021 #14
Vahjoo

Władziu.

There is still another possibility - Waciu which is a diminutive of Wacław in vocative case.
BruceN
16 Apr 2021 #15
I remember my grandfather's nickname being Vodge and my aunt mentioned to me that it was the Polish equivalent of Walter. (Not sure on the spelling, that's how I stumbled on this to begin with). Etymologically it makes sense as the W and V in the European language came from the same or similar sound (U; V; W) and the D and T follow the same pattern. I know that what a Slavic speaker pronounces my last name Nowakowski it somewhat sounds like Nowva instead of Nowa like an Anglican speaker would pronounce it.
Dick K
31 Jan 2022 #16
What is the "americanized" equivalet of Wojciech ? I have a few of them in the family but I am confused about them. Apparently there were different Prussian and Slavic dialects in Poland and in German Laurence became Lorentis or Lorentiz in the south and Lorenez near the Baltic.

The name Lawrence in Slavic was Wawczyniec.

Dan...... Have a Wadyslaw in my family who became "Uncle Walter" . So much for the L that wasn't an L according to your info. My uncle came from Grabow Parish north and west of Warsaw. He and his brothers were serfs until 1897 who "followed the crops" with their Dad Wawczyniec. Have no idea what happened to Wawczyniec Matusiak or his wife Maryanna or Marie (maiden name) Starosta or Starsota.
Looker - | 1,114
31 Jan 2022 #17
@Dick K
I'll write more "Polish-sounding" names from your post:
Wladyslaw (where the "l" is Polish "ł")
Lorenz
Wawrzyniec
Starosta
Atch 17 | 3,995
1 Feb 2022 #18
The Polish alphabet has both L and this other letter. It has a very slight "w" sound when pronouncing it.

You might be interested to know that the widespread use of the 'w' sound is a relatively recent thing. In pre-war days the sound was regular 'l' amongst educated people and the 'w' sound was considered a bit uncouth. If you listen to radio plays from the immediate post-war period you will hear all those ł, words pronounced with a regular 'l' sound.
mafketis 34 | 11,551
1 Feb 2022 #19
r all those ł, words pronounced with a regular 'l' sound.

well it wasn't exactly the same sound.... in rough terms

l - similar to English l in words like light, lift (sometimes called the 'bright' or 'clear' l)

ł - similar to English l in small, tall, pill (sometimes called the 'dark' l)

If anyone ever heard the old 'Mowimy po polsku' tapes from the 1960s they still used the older pronunciation

the two English sounds are very different but English speakers don't hear the difference because where one occurs the other can't.

I'm pretty sure some Slavic languages still distinguish them the way Polish did... (not Czech, both sounds became l there) I think some Polish speakers in Lithuania still have the old pronunciation as well or used to until very recently

Does modern Irish have a similar distinction between 'broad' l (more like old ł) and 'slender' l more like l?

The same change (the 'hard' l (ł) sounding like an English 'w' also sometimes happens in colloquial Russian but it's still considered sub-standard there.
Atch 17 | 3,995
1 Feb 2022 #20
The name Lawrence in Slavic was Wawczyniec.

Actually I believe it's Wawrzyniec but whatever, it's a very weird form of Lawrence/Laurence. That's one of those typical Polish anomalies. Like Mikołaj for Nicholas. I've always thought that somebody misheard the 'n' sound at the beginning, mispronounced the name and somehow it spread.

Does modern Irish have a similar distinction between 'broad' l (more like old ł) and 'slender' l more like l?

Not to the best of my knowledge. L is always pronounced the same way. The 'l' in Irish is always kind of 'rolled' a bit like a Russian 'l' but it sort of depends on the dialect of Irish. Irish is a very forgiving language - like the people, ha ha! You can pretty much pronounce it any way you want to and it's acceptable. There are so few native speakers left that many people who can speak Irish mix their dialects because of the different teachers they had over the years.

the two English sounds are very different but English speakers don't hear the difference because where one occurs the other can't.

That's very interesting. I'd never really considered it before but you're right, they are different - although with some regional accents I think they'd be almost identical.
CJP
18 Feb 2022 #21
All of the Wojciech's in the research I have done have gone by Albert in English
WalterGson
11 May 2022 #22
My grandfather's name was Walter and his older relatives called him Vadj.


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