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CAPLAN Origin of surname

CAPLAN, CHAPLAIN, KAPPLEIN

Surnames derive from one of many different origins. Sometimes there may be more than one explanation for the same name. This family name derives from lineage (priestly, Levite, convert).

Caplan is a form of Chaplain, the person who conducts prayers; it derived from the Latin word Cappella ("chapel"), a small Christian prayerhouse, which produced the term Chaplain, designating the person who conducts the prayers.

Jews took the name Kaplan/Caplan, particularly in Eastern Europe, as a vernacular equivalent of the name Cohen. The first high priest (Cohen) of the Jews was Aharon, elder brother of Moses. The surname Cohen, or Ha-Cohen ("the priest"), is as ancient as the function itself, and throughout the Diaspora it is one of the most widespread sources of Jewish family names (although not all Jews bearing a name linked to Cohen are actually of priestly lineage).

The spelling Caplan is found particularly in Central and Eastern Europe, as is the Yiddish variant Kapplein. Chaplain is documented in western Europe. A distinguished bearer of the Jewish family name Caplan was the 20th century American archaeologist and philologist, Harry Caplan.
ID Number:
163273
Written by researchers of ANU Museum of the Jewish People
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Would you like to help us improving the content? Send us your suggestions
CAPLAN Origin of surname
CAPLAN, CHAPLAIN, KAPPLEIN

Surnames derive from one of many different origins. Sometimes there may be more than one explanation for the same name. This family name derives from lineage (priestly, Levite, convert).

Caplan is a form of Chaplain, the person who conducts prayers; it derived from the Latin word Cappella ("chapel"), a small Christian prayerhouse, which produced the term Chaplain, designating the person who conducts the prayers.

Jews took the name Kaplan/Caplan, particularly in Eastern Europe, as a vernacular equivalent of the name Cohen. The first high priest (Cohen) of the Jews was Aharon, elder brother of Moses. The surname Cohen, or Ha-Cohen ("the priest"), is as ancient as the function itself, and throughout the Diaspora it is one of the most widespread sources of Jewish family names (although not all Jews bearing a name linked to Cohen are actually of priestly lineage).

The spelling Caplan is found particularly in Central and Eastern Europe, as is the Yiddish variant Kapplein. Chaplain is documented in western Europe. A distinguished bearer of the Jewish family name Caplan was the 20th century American archaeologist and philologist, Harry Caplan.
Written by researchers of ANU Museum of the Jewish People