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Kapushka name - what is the meaning?


Calicoe 2 | 133
6 May 2009 #1
So what about the name Kapushka?
Polonius3 983 | 12,333
6 May 2009 #2
It would have to be Kapusia or Kapusza in Polish, assuming that it was correctly transcribed into English spelling. But no-one currently bears either the Kapusia or Kapusza surname. There are 2 people named Kapusa in Poland.

A kapusia might be the diminutive of kapka (drop, squirt of liquid)
A kapus was once a kind of mediaeval hood.
Or possibly it originated as a corrupted form derived from kapusta (cabbage) or a toponymic nickname traceable to Kapustowo, Kapuśniki or Kapuściska (Cabbageville, Cabbageshire). All in all, rather enigmatic!
OP Calicoe 2 | 133
7 May 2009 #3
Thanks Polonius3. Every frickin' thing about me and my heritage is enigmatic - it is a never-ending headache. I thought once I found out certain identifers, things would get easier, but they just keep taking me further and futher away.

Is the Kapushka name more common in the Ukraine, in Russia, or among the Ruthenians?

Any one know? I will also try to find out somehow.

Thanks again.

*added: it is a bit of a mystery, because I was told that the maternal grandmother spoke Polish, and had a Polish accent. She obviously identified as Polish, so maybe she is part of the populations that could have lived in the Ukraine but identified as Polish politically and culturally ... I don't know. Did they have different last names? It seems that she could have been from a peasant family that farmed cabbage sometime in the late 19th Century and fled to the U.S.?

Don't know. All I have is a last name and photo packed away. I will try to visit that part of the family this summer and try to get more information.
Shari - | 21
7 May 2009 #4
kapushka is a river in Russia, apparently.

ouzel.com/kamchatka/kapushka.htm

It's in the Kamchatka region.
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kamchatka_Peninsula
OP Calicoe 2 | 133
7 May 2009 #5
Yeah, I found that out recently as well. It's in the Far East, just below Siberia. Apparently, the Kamchatka region has great trout fishing - some of the best in the world, lol.

But, that's why I've been leaning toward the fact that her origins could have been in Russia via the Ukraine. But, if she was supposedly from the Trans-Carpathian region, how could she have ended up with the name Kapushka? I think the cabbage origin may be more likely, although less glamorous.

edit: But either way, I think it is most likely she was what many have termed a "Russian Pole." I have to do a bit more historical research to understand the full meaning of that term.
Shari - | 21
7 May 2009 #6
ok, also found that Kapushka/Kabuska/kabushka is a variant of babushka in Russian.
It can mean either grandmother or a females head-scarf.
OP Calicoe 2 | 133
7 May 2009 #7
oh and yeah - actually entertained the idea of the Rusyns or Ruthenians, and think this is very likely because a great many of them migrated to the U.S. I have also poured over pictures of these guys on a number of links on google; did you know Andy Warhol was also a Rusyn? I think at one point they were also called "Russian Poles," no? I think it may have been to differentiate themselves from the Ukrainians.

I didn't know about the babushka/head scarf connection; that somehow seems so much better than cabbage, lol - not that I've got anything against it!

edit: Somehow your links and my response got erased or removed so I'll repeat my comment here:

Thanks Shari, you're the bomb ;)
Sasha 2 | 1,083
7 May 2009 #8
ok, also found that Kapushka/Kabuska/kabushka is a variant of babushka in Russian.

I'm afraid your guess is wrong, Shari. "Kabushka" is an old word and it means the roll of usually cheese or curd made for future use. For the vast majority of Russians that word won't make any sense at all. And "babushka" is "babushka". :)

As for "Kapushka" things seem to be more optimistic. It looks like misspelt "kopushka" (affectionate diminutive) or more often "kopusha" (the word it is). It's so often misspelt that one can get more results googling for "kApusha" rather than "kOpusha" on RUnet. The word means "dawdler" and derives from the verb "kopat'"=to dig.

I can't exclude though that it has some local meaning in Siberia or wherever else the word is used.
Shari - | 21
7 May 2009 #9
For the record, it wasn't a guess. I looked the word up in google and was directed to a dictionary (in google-books). That book had the reference of "Kapushka/Kabuska/kabushka" being a variant of babushka and also head-scarves!
Polonius3 983 | 12,333
7 May 2009 #10
If there is a river in Siberia called the Капуша, then Kapusha would indeed be the correct, traditional way of transcibing the Cyrillic into Latin-alphabet English.

Have you no information from any family member on where yoru ancestors were from?
OP Calicoe 2 | 133
7 May 2009 #11
Hi Polonius. Thanks so much for your help as well. I was adopted, so I didn't grow up with my Eastern European ancestors. I did meet my biological mother though, and maintain a relationship with her. Unfortunately, it is long distance and she is 80, so she doesn't do computers. The only information she knows about their whereabout is what I've said here, which went like this: "from somewhere in the Carpathian Mountains," and last name was Kapushka.

I will try to meet the rest of her extended family this summer, and see if any of them know or remember information. I think according to the location, history, and her name, it makes sense that she would be Rusyn, and I guess there would be language overlap if it was in the Ukraine. But why the heck wouldn't the children know it?
Sasha 2 | 1,083
7 May 2009 #12
For the record, it wasn't a guess. I looked the word up in google and was directed to a dictionary (in google-books). That book had the reference of "Kapushka/Kabuska/kabushka" being a variant of babushka and also head-scarves!

Would you mind giving me a link? I believe there might be some confusion or either I learn something new.

Calicoe

If I were you, I'd better stick with the word "Kabushka" discovering your origins. This last name is mostly Ukrainian and that's what I would looking for... At least this fits way better this theory:

"from somewhere in the Carpathian Mountains,"

Shari - | 21
8 May 2009 #13
The book is...
Dictionary of American Regional English: I-O
By Frederic Gomes Cassidy, Joan Houston Hall
Contributor Frederic Gomes Cassidy
Edition: illustrated
Published by Harvard University Press, 1985
ISBN 0674205197, 9780674205192
927 pages

books.google.com.au/books?id=eEB0YFR2EowC&pg=PA188&lpg=PA188&dq=kapushka+%2B+dictionary&source=bl&ots=S7PyStgq45&sig=aK3u4H1lNkgVX4AVvc5FeQ3uCVw&hl=en&ei=4W8DSuz2LqT66gPqj7WHAw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=3

Let me know if the link doesn't work. It's on page 188 (it doesn't show the page number, but 187 and 189 are shown).
Sasha 2 | 1,083
8 May 2009 #14
It's on page 188 (it doesn't show the page number, but 187 and 189 are shown).

Oh... I see... "var of babushka"... maybe somewhere but not in Russian. :)
OP Calicoe 2 | 133
8 May 2009 #15
If I were you, I'd better stick with the word "Kabushka" discovering your origins. This last name is mostly Ukrainian and that's what I would looking for... At least this fits way better this theory:

Calicoe:
"from somewhere in the Carpathian Mountains,"

Uhm, that's not a theory, that's a fact, and that's the way it was handed to me. The rest I have to piece together myself, and I think we have been discussing that it could be from somewhere in the Ukraine, no? I have also speculated about this previously on other other threads. Also, if the last name given to me is Kapushka, then there must be a reason that it is not Kabushka.

But, you are right, I do see the similarities, and it could have been changed upon arrival to the United States due to pronunciation or error. I think all clues are pointing me more and more towards the Ukraine.

Thanks for your help.
Shari - | 21
8 May 2009 #16
True, perhaps it does not have any meaning in modern Russian. Modern Slavic languages have grown from Old Church Slavonic or Old East Slavic. I'm sure many words have gone out of usage or the meaning/context has changed over time (all languages do this, English is a great example). This has been a really fascinating discussion, I think. :)
pawian 224 | 24,561
1 May 2021 #17
So what about the name Kapushka?

Such a name doesn`t exist in Poland.

But
Foreigners say it when they try to utter other similar Polish surnames, e.g, Kapustka, a football player.

weszlo.com/2018/05/19/bartoszu-i-co-dalej/?mode=list


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