The Zwicki family name first began to be used in the German state of Bavaria
. After the 12th century, as hereditary surnames
began to be adopted, names that were derived from locations became particularly common. The family name Zwicki is a local
surname. Originally denoting the proprietorship of an estate or influence within a village, the German preposition von, which means from or of, used with local names, was taken as a mark of aristocracy. The surname Zwicki was given to someone who lived in the town of Zwickl in Bavaria. In the eastern regions of Bohemia and Silesia
was a short form of Zwickauer,
which denoted a person from the Saxon city of Zwickau. In Old German, the words Zwick, Zwack,
and the verb zwicken
meant to pack
Early Origins of the Zwicki family
The surname Zwicki was first found in Bavaria
, where the name emerged in mediaeval times as one of the notable families of the region. From the 13th century the surname was identified with the great social and economic evolution which made this territory a landmark contributor to the development of the nation. Zwickl is a town in Bavaria, and Berchtold der Zwickel was the founder of a prominent line of the family in the Bavarian city Augsburg around 1317. In the eastern regions of Bohemia and Silesia
, Zwicker or Zwicke was a short form of the label "Zwickauer," applied to a person from the Saxon city of Zwickau. For instance, Herman Czwicker (Czickower) was recorded in the Silesian city Breslau in 1348. Chronicles also mention Heinrich Zwick of the Swiss town St. Gallen in the year 1436. In Old-German, the words Zwick, Zwack, or Zweck referred literally to nails or bolts, and the verb "zwicken" or "zwacken" meant to pack or load.
Early History of the Zwicki family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Zwicki research.Another 223 words (16 lines of text) covering the years 1709, 1792, 1403, 1391, 1403 and 1792 are included under the topic Early Zwicki History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Zwicki Spelling Variations
Many cultural groups lived in the German states in medieval times. Each had its own dialect and traditions, and unique variations of popular names. Low German, which is similar to contemporary Dutch, was spoken in Westphalia
. German names are characterized by additions such as regional suffixes and phrases that tell something about the origin or background of its original bearer. Further contributing to the variation in German names was the fact that there were no spelling rules in medieval times: scribes recorded names according to their sound. The recorded spelling variations
of Zwicki include Zwick, Zwickel, Zwicker (Saxony), Zwicke (Silesia), Zwickert (Silesia), Zwicken, Zwicki (Switzerland), Zwicky (Switzerland), Zwack (Bavaria), Zwacker, Zweck and many more.
Early Notables of the Zwicki family (pre 1700)
Prominent among members of the name Zwicki in this period include Petrus Zwicker (died 1403), East Prussian Inquisitor and cleric of the Roman Catholic Order of the Celestines, (1391-1403) he led one of the largest... Another 35 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Zwicki Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Zwicki family to the New World and Oceana
The great European flow of migration to North America, which began in the middle of the 17th century and continued into the 20th century, was particularly attractive to those from Bavaria
who wished to escape either poverty or religious persecution. For many Bavarian tenant
farmers, the chance to own their own land was a major incentive. So the widespread colonization of the United States began in 1650, when many immigrants from Germany
settled in pockets in Pennsylvania, Texas, New York, Illinois, and California. In Canada, German settlement centered in Ontario and the prairie provinces. Among those of this surname listed in various historical records were: Matthew Zwick, who came with his wife and their four children to America in 1709. Heinrich Zwick came to Philadelphia in 1743; Veronica Zwick arrived in New York City in 1710 at the age of 39.