Can the name Johannes be the same as James?

+4 votes

For an ancestor of mine I found someone who was really close to the possible guy. His name is James Carey and I found his children came from Galway. I found a man by the name of Johannes Keary that fits the description, but it's not James.

Is it possible they are the same person?

asked in Genealogy Help by H Maloney G2G1 (1.8k points)

3 Answers

+12 votes
Best answer
Johannes is more likely to be the same as John. James is sometimes written as Jacobus.
answered by Lynda Crackett G2G6 Pilot (620k points)
selected by Steve Schmidt
Could there be an error in transcription?
Has anyone considered that Catholic priests sometimes annotated the parishioners Gaelic or English  names to Latin?

A further complication can occur if the first names were recorded in Latin, rather than English, as was sometimes the case. Some of the more common Latin-English first name translations are as follows:

  • Carolus - Charles
  • Demetrius - Jeremiah, Diarmuid, Darby
  • Gulielmus - William
  • Honoria - Nora
  • Jacobus - James
  • Joannes or Ioannes - John
  • Petrus - Peter
  • Thaddeus - Timothy

The results presented include all records in which the name appears. The person may be a spouse, child, parent, sponsor or witness, etc. This is done to give the greatest possibility of finding the required record and to facilitate the establishing of family connections. For instance, sponsors and witnesses may be closely related (e.g. a brother, sister, cousin, etc.) to the child or the spouses.
If you hover the cursor over a result, you will be presented with a pop-up of a subset of the record details to assist you in locating the desired record. You may also click on a record to view the full record.

[This citation came from the HELP section of Irish Genealogy.( Searching by Person.]

+1 vote
Johannes is a strange name to be coming out of Ireland;  it is actually a German name.  The Irish equivalent of James is Seamus.

What would happen on Ellis Island is that the Immigration officer would look at an immigrant's papers, and if the name was unpronounceable or had no equivalent in English, the Inspector would just fill in an English language name that came near to that listed on the Immigrant's papers. could have a winner there, but it would be wise to do more checking, and look for other sources.
answered by Dan Sparkman G2G6 Mach 1 (18.1k points)
Thank you :) yeah, I've been looking for other sources.
Not really so strange Dan. A lot of Irish Catholic records show the Latin variants of names.
Lynda, you have support in another G2G topic, and it seems to fit the OP's case.  Nice one!
+2 votes
Was his middle name possibly James? In my ancestors it seemed some families named everyone on the sons Johan then used their middle name.
answered by Butch Smith G2G3 (3.7k points)
True, it's possible. I'm not sure, I've only seen James elsewhere.

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