Mystery Monday: Ziro

Every Monday we will post an entry that hasn’t yet been published with a view towards harnessing the collective onomastic power of the internet. If you have any thoughts about the name’s origin, other variants it might be related to, other examples of its use, etc., please share them in the comments! If you wish to browse other Mystery Monday names, there is an index.

Today’s name is an Italian masculine diminutive from 14th C Friulia. At least — we’re pretty sure it’s a diminutive, because of the suffix -lin(o). But our hypothesis of the root name is merely that: A hypothesis. We’d love to get confirmation one way or another whether Ziro is the correct root name, and would love to see an example of the radiconym.

Ziro

If you’ve got any other examples of this name, or a different hypothesis for the root name, please share in the comments!

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3 Comments

Filed under crowd-sourcing, dictionary entries, mystery monday

3 responses to “Mystery Monday: Ziro

  1. Jörg Knappen

    First, lin is a German diminutive ending (most seen in Alsace and Suebia, corresponding to Modern High German lein), not a native Italian one. There is no Germanic stem that I can match with the Ziru- part.

    Second, an initial Z- in northern Italy can correspond to a G- in standard Italian. This guidance leads to the probable matching name Girolamo, the Italian of Hieronymus (Jerome). I think this is the name we are looking for.

  2. Brian M. Scott

    Documenti per la storia del Friuli dal 1317 al 1325 raccolti dall’abate, nr. 329, has the nominative: Zirulinus de Civitate 1322, quite possibly the same person. The Zirulino de Rubignacco 1328 (Friuli-14thC, nr. 490) may also be the same person. What appears to be a different transcription of the same document, visible in snippet view here, gives the name as Cirulino de Rubignacco.

    «Cum causa matrimonialis sit de maximis causis». Per uno studio degli acta giudiziari nel patriarcato d’Aquileia: le cause matrimoniali dalla metà del XIII agli inizi del XIV secolo, Scrineum Rivistat 14 (2017), DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.13128/Scrineum-21992, p. 235, has presentibus … Çirulino et Galangano de Civitate 1310. Yet another instance from Cividale can be found in Il registro di Nicolussio (a. 1340) [PDF]: Çirulino 1340. This document is apparently one of the oldest texts in Friulian and is discussed from a linguistic point of view in Federico Vicario, ‘Cividale 1340. Note di cameraria tra friulano e tosco-veneto’, in Revue de Linguistique Romane, 70:471-518. On p. 478 he notes among other instances of ç ~ c ~ z variation that Çintilino; Çirulino; Çovane, Çuane, Çuano; Runçigna; and Ancelo correspond respectively to standard Italian Gentilino; Girolino; Giovanni; Ronzina de Canale; and Angelo. It seems very likely, then, that all of these really are the same name, and that its standard Italian form is Girolino.

    This name seems not to be common, but it does occur, e.g., Girolinus de Strelomia 1255 here, apparently from Asti (a bit east of Turin). I haven’t enough of a feel for Italian names to judge how likely it is to be a Girolamo variant, though I shouldn’t be astonished if it were. Still, a Germanic origin is perhaps not entirely out of the question: Morlet I:101a has Gerleno and Gerolinus, presumably diminutives from the *gaizaz ‘spear’ theme.

    For what it may be worth, among the documents calendared in L’Archeografo triestino : raccolta di opuscoli notizie per Trieste e per l’Istria, ser. 2, vol. 8, 1881-2, is Nr. CCXXIV, from 1398; one of the witnesses is listed as Zirulo de Viana, but it’s not clear to what extent this has been normalized.

    Finally, I did find an instance of Ziro in Documenta historiae Chroaticae periodum antiquam illustratia, Zagreb, 1877, Nr. 22; the document is from 1000, and the man is from Chosiça, which, to judge by other place-names in the document, appears to be modern Kozica in Croatia. This name could well be Slavic.

    • Brian M. Scott

      Try again. (It’s a pity that there’s no preview feature.)

      Documenti per la storia del Friuli dal 1317 al 1325 raccolti dall’abate, nr. 329, has the nominative: Zirulinus de Civitate 1322, quite possibly the same person. The Zirulino de Rubignacco 1328 (Friuli-14thC, nr. 490) may also be the same person. What appears to be a different transcription of the same document, visible in snippet view here, gives the name as Cirulino de Rubignacco.

      «Cum causa matrimonialis sit de maximis causis». Per uno studio degli acta giudiziari nel patriarcato d’Aquileia: le cause matrimoniali dalla metà del XIII agli inizi del XIV secolo, Scrineum Rivistat 14 (2017), DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.13128/Scrineum-21992, p. 235, has presentibus … Çirulino et Galangano de Civitate 1310. Yet another instance from Cividale can be found in Il registro di Nicolussio (a. 1340) [PDF]: Çirulino 1340. This document is apparently one of the oldest texts in Friulian and is discussed from a linguistic point of view in Federico Vicario, ‘Cividale 1340. Note di cameraria tra friulano e tosco-veneto’, in Revue de Linguistique Romane, 70:471-518. On p. 478 he notes among other instances of ç ~ c ~ z variation that Çintilino; Çirulino; Çovane, Çuane, Çuano; Runçigna; and Ancelo correspond respectively to standard Italian Gentilino; Girolino; Giovanni; Ronzina de Canale; and Angelo. It seems very likely, then, that all of these really are the same name, and that its standard Italian form is Girolino.

      This name seems not to be common, but it does occur, e.g., Girolinus de Strelomia 1255 here, apparently from Asti (a bit east of Turin). I haven’t enough of a feel for Italian names to judge how likely it is to be a Girolamo variant, though I shouldn’t be astonished if it were. Still, a Germanic origin is perhaps not entirely out of the question: Morlet I:101a has Gerleno and Gerolinus, presumably diminutives from the *gaizaz ‘spear’ theme.

      For what it may be worth, among the documents calendared in L’Archeografo triestino : raccolta di opuscoli notizie per Trieste e per l’Istria, ser. 2, vol. 8, 1881-2, is Nr. CCXXIV, from 1398; one of the witnesses is listed as Zirulo de Viana, but it’s not clear to what extent this has been normalized.

      Finally, I did find an instance of Ziro in Documenta historiae Chroaticae periodum antiquam illustratia, Zagreb, 1877, Nr. 22; the document is from 1000, and the man is from Chosiça, which, to judge by other place-names in the document, appears to be modern Kozica in Croatia. This name could well be Slavic.

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