The conventions used for von (v) German notation

+9 votes
I have been asked to forward this question/consideration on the to the group.

When referring to the German von in a name, older Prussian style which began I believe in the military

a v or v. was used (example in my family v Pfeiltizer gennant Franck) when the designation was related to noble matriculation.  You will find this consistent with their standard reference works such as the Adels.

My own example is quite useful to note that the family originally had a last name

Franck is one of the oldest on record as far as I can see - 9th century Polish - some nobility had last names, some didn't

v Pfeiltizer is not a place but a heroic designation - a kind of super master archer.  Some of these titles were qualitative or locational or other

On the other hand a von was used to designate a simple "from" or "of" or in some cases, a purchased title.

So von is popularly used both ways, but most resources distinguish between von and v as the Prussians tended to prevail

So my concern may be far too late in the game - but wondered what peole thought.

In German oriented genealogical groups, I have noted a particular desire for American users (I'm Canadian) to be able to distinguish the two as part of this relentless search for what they call gateway ancestors


a von was used for all others
in Policy and Style by Lloyd de Vere Hunt G2G6 Mach 3 (33.1k points)
retagged by Maggie N.

2 Answers

+4 votes
I'm so grateful for your detailed descriptions above. It's exciting when the unknown or barely known is disclosed. Thanks Lloyd for sharing your knowledge. and we realize too: Ah the subtitles of knowledge!
by Anonymous Burnett G2G6 Mach 2 (27.7k points)
+1 vote
There verities are always interesting to read. They do come in handy. Thanks for taking your time to explain this to us.
by Jerry Dolman G2G6 Pilot (170k points)

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