Some on Pink-warts, bees and old documents...
In Christmas, having a little more free time as usual, we started to discuss
with Sergiusz and Wolfgang on the genealogy and ethymology of our names. The
starting point was Aunt
Ruth's Map - the map of Lower Silesia, with two locations very
interesting for us - the first, ALTEICHEN (now Czerna)
was "clan nest" of Wolfgang's family. Not so far, to the South
from Glogau (now Głogów) there is a
location PINQUART (Bienkow now, with diacritics
over "n" and "o"). Nobody from our family knows
something about it and about connections with Pinkwart (or Pinquart, because
such branche of our clan exists in Germany too) family.
Below extracts from Wolfgang and Maciek letters (26-29.12.2002)
I had phone with aunt Ruth for the edition year
of the map; she must ask her son Frank, but she means 1908 could be right.
This small village (exact: a smal concentration of some agricultural esates)
had the name "Czerna" since beginning. After 1875 Germans had
given the new name "Alteichen"; for a long time the village was
called (by Germans) as "Tschirnau" or "Tschernau"; in
the Hitler "Empire" (Aunt Ruth told me), it was well known as
"Die Fritsch'en Höfe" (= estates), because the owner of these
estates was a General with the name "Fritsch"; he should have
dealed with the Russian successful, that the village (and a beautifull
castle) were not destroied. Ruth has an old engraving (a gift of her son),
which shows this castle; she will send me the description of it.
Back to the name "Alteichen"; this
name can not be common longer as between 1875 and 1918 (?); it will be
difficult to find on other maps. In our Institute we have no old maps,
because they all are burned 16th of march 1945.
The new name of the village "Pinquart"
(some estates likewise in Czerna) is interesting. What means "Bien"
in Polish? Or is it a takeover of an old German word? "Bien(e)"
means in German a bee, and if this declaration could be right, we would have
a direct connection to the old content of "Pinqwart" (I sent you
the researches of my old professor ...)
The history of your grandfather and the line of
Pinkwarts in Cologne is very interesting. Perhaps I can help you and ask in
Frankfurt/Oder, if you give me some details of prenames and times; sometimes
we can find such sources in archives of the churches. In the archiv of the
town - I think - all was destroyed in the last war.
So long, til next time. Wolfgang
Dear Wolfgang, interesting information of
Alteichen - I'm very interesting in informations about Pinquart etymology -
I have no ideas. Polish name Bienkow means for me nothing - in every case
has no connections with bees, honey or other sweet things... I also see no
relations with name Pinquart - so if you can explain us this - send us the
As to Pinkwarts from Frankfurt: my
grandfather was Karl Rudolf P. born 1862 in F./O, died 1930 in Warsaw.
Wilhelm Heinrich Pinkwart, 3.8.00, Berlin
Heinrich Pinkwart, 25.10.1873, Tzschetschnow, Kreis
Wilhelm Pinkwart, 14.10.?, Tzschetschnow, Kreis Frankfurt Oder -
Thanks for the details of the forefathers. Do you
know - I think so - which religion (denomination) your forefather have had?
I'll try to connect the "correct" church in Frankfurt/Oder. Perhaps
we will learn indeed that we have common ancestors, because Ruth told me, that
her grandfather (and my great grandfather) had a lot of brothers. They all are
gone from Czerna-Alteichen to Germany in the first half of 19th century. My
great grandfather was engeneer at the new railway (he they say was a cruel,
unpleasant type ...). But only the history of one brother is known; he was
employed at a railwaystation anywhere in Saxonia. All the other brothers are
unknown; perhaps one of them goes in your direction of family-history. It
would be really great, if we could detect this result.
I think the etymology of "Pinkwart" or
"Pinqwart" I had sent you a long time ago. My old professor had a
big experience in this objects - he was a historical geographer and worked
about historic landscapes in Europe. He had found that our name in all
probablity has its origin. In early Middle Age existed so called "bee-forests".
In parts of woods the treetops were cut and hollowed out. Such places are
predestined as beehives. Such - for the middle age very importend - places of
the woods were named "pin", "ping" or even "pink",
especially in the contact area between German and Slavonic peoples (!); men,
who had fostered and guarded these very worthwhile areas in the forests,
were called "pinwart", sometimes "pinkwart" and later
"pinquart". Mr Jaeger, my old chief (he is 80 this year) has
shown me middleage archives, where this name as important profession is
refered! Now all is clear: we are "guards of bees" - not
writers, journalists, altists or geographers ... and pinkwarts were
a high respectable profession (on the contrary to these other...). Wolfgang
Dear Wolfgang, I haven't got earlier such
revelations because it is't possible I forgot it! But maybe I've got
Alzheimer.... So Pink means a place in forest where were made artificial
hollows in trees for beehives? Something like semi-natural apiary? It means
that version Pink-wart is older then Pinquart - the last would be
pseudo-romanisation, latinisation or something! VERY INTERESTING!!! And has Mr.
Jaeger any old - the better of all - medieval - document mentioning it for scaning?
Other think about Tante Ruth infos: my
grandfathr Karl Rudolf WAS railwayman (locksmith or something, working on
Maybe looking for archives in F/O is a
task for Uwe - all my ancestors from the side odf Father was protestant,
augsburg evangelics. I'm catholic because of my Mother - and in our family
always was the ill-fated domination of women and exists till today...
Thanks so much, and I wait for another
Maciek (Sergiusz is absent just now for skiing...)
Dear Maciek, unfortunately its not possible to get some (or one) medieval
document from Mr. Jaeger to scan (I had ask him in this case long time before).
He himself doesn' own such papers, he worked in his activ time in many German
archives and he can't remember, where he had found this. He has finished his
Geography totaly; at the moment he is writing his reminisces of war (he was
fighting at the Russian front being 17!!).
The changing of notation of our name is interesting indeed. Earlier I believed
that the different notation could be explained by the different notation of
"qu" or "kw" in the Polisch and German language; but this
cannot be right, if the seperation of part of the name in pink- and -wart is
Last point I'll try to find the adresse of the right church in Frankfurt. I
think Uwe only seldom is in his old patria.
Best regards to all (with or without skiing!) It's true, that you have -30° ?
We have at the moment the typical climat of Christmas with +12°!!
Well, by now is more warm here - only -10
degrees. Its a pity about Mr Jaeger and no contact with old document by him,
but I think that we'll try to find it somewhere else. If the etymology of
two-parts of our name is correct - there is something another interesting matter.
Your very impressive description about the forest with trees partly destroyed
by our barbarian ancestors by cutting tops for making place for bees' house
make me to think about Polish name for such cutted tree: such trunk is named
in Polish "pien", with diacritic over "n", a little one -
"pieniek". It's very close to Pin or Pink, isn't it?
So in the name you can find Polish-German
sincretism - Polish "Pink" and German "wart-en"... Really
common-european idea... Maciek
It seams that your deduction of the prefix "pin .." is exactly
correct, because first - the naming of the profession "pinkwart" was typical
in border areas between Polish and German people, second - I remember that Mr
Jaeger said, that the prefix "pin(k)" is an slavian word took over
by Germans. In this context (pin, pink, pien, pieniek) its interesting the
changing of the village from "Pinquart" to "Bienkow", what
do you mean?
The suffix "-wart" is widly common in all old Germanic languages
since the early middle-Age (in England too) meaning "custodian of
..." (the guard [custodian] of the gold in the Nibelungen); we have
this suffix in some old prenames and in present professions like "Tankwart"
(filling station attendant) and so on.
I think we have made a good step in understanding of our name and if it may be
an adventures understanding approximately, we must think over, that in
medivial times the honey of bees was nearly so worthful as salt. There existed
no better substances to sweet meals.Wolfgang
Pity, it wasn't WINE-WART
... But in old Poland alcoholized honey was the most popular drink... Maciek
Aunt Ruth had phoned some minutes before; she
will send me all news in copy, she had got by her son (a picture of Czerna
with a Polish description - I'll send ist to you). By the way, the map, you
asked for, is younger as we thought; it's from 1937!