Meaning and Origin of the Surname Gramenz

Meaning of the Surname Gramenz

The meaning of our family name seems to be verified now.

Gramenz is a Slovincian word. This West Slavic language, which is closely related to the Polish and the Kashubian language, was spoken mainly by the Slovincians or Leba-Kashubians. This language has been extinct ca. 1945.

"Gramenz" means thunder or has at least the word stem of this.

Therefore the origin of the surname can be limited to the area of former Pomerania. It is clear that there were two villages in Pomerania called Gramenz. The current name of both villages is Grzmiąca (more on this in Origin of Family). That the interpretation of the surname must be correct can be seen in reverse at the village Donnerau in former Silesia. This village today is called Grzmiąca too.

Whether the villages were named after the families or the families after the villages ist not clear by now. However, it is very likely that the family or several families have adopted the name of the village, because this was quite common in the past.

Meanwhile, thanks to the DNA genealogy we were able to prove that several non-related families have adopted this surname. However, there are indications that this might have been done not independently from each other.

The spelling of the most original family name Gramenz varies to Grammenz, Gramens, Gramentz, Grammentz, Graminz, Gramintz, Gramins, Graumenz and Graumünz. As proved by churchbooks the surnames Grammenz, Graumenz and Graumünz have been derived from the original family name Gramenz1.

By now it is absolutely not clear if all different spellings lead back to a common clan or even family. This question could be answered only by the DNA genealogy.

In my own research I found at least six different spellings of the family name of our own branch in the church records: Gramenz, Gramentz, Gramens, Graminz, Gramins and even Gramius.

Also because of the current frequencies of the different spellings of the surname, Gramenz appears to have been the original name of the families. According to this Gramenz is by far the most widespread surname in contrast to the other spellings.