The meaning of names among Mediterranean Jews

Marc Eliany ©


among other possible variations depending on the country and language of the person.

The root of the name may be 'gz'

Prefixes attached to the root name such as (aben, iben, abi, avi, ben, bin, abou, a, aj, al, bel, e, er, i, me, m, o, wi, vi, ) denotes usually a relation to a person, i.e., the father of or the son of X, a place, i.e., a person from X, an occupation, i.e., a person who practices a specific occupation, a characteristic of a person, i.e., beautiful...

The prefixes al, el are equivalent to 'the' in English or the article 'le' in French.

In the Moroccan Berbers tradition, prefixes such as 'wi' 'vi' 'i' means usually a family relationship to X, the equivalent of Abu in Arabic, i.e., 'the father of', 'son of' a man, a tribal affiliation and so forth.In the Hebrew tradition, the prefix ‘M ‘ is an abbreviation of the word 'from.'

The root ‘gz’ in North African dialects may refer to a place named 'gaz' or 'gez'.

The root ‘gzz’ in Hebrew refers to 'shear' or 'sheep shearing' and possibly 'pass' or 'go by.'

ALGAZI Itshak ben Chélomo (1882-1964).Turkey. Poet. Singer and composer in Uruguay. Authored Chiré Yisraël bé’éréts hakédem (The songs of Israel in the Orient).
ALGAZI Léon Yéhoudah (1890-1971). Roumenia. Composer. Conductor. Music professor. Broadcaster with the Voice of Israel.
ALGAZI Abraham ben Moché (1560?-1640?). Turkey. Rabbi.
ALGAZI Chélomo (1610-1683). Turkey. Rabbi. Opposed the false messaiah Chabbétaï Tsvi. Author of Léhém sétarim (Secret Bread).
ALGAZI Chélomo ben Abraham (1673-1726). Palestine. Chief rabbi in Egypt. Author. His books disappeared.
ALGAZI Itshak ben Abraham (XVIIes.). Greece. Rabbi. Originaire de Grèce. Author of Dorèch tov (On the path of goodness path).
ALGAZI Nissim Yah’acov ben Haïm Chélomo (XVIIIes.). Turkey. Rabbi. Author of commentaries in Safed, Israel.

GUEDJ Edgard (XXes.). Algeria. Administrator and educator. Contributed to the development of the youth movement in Morocco.
GUEDJ Gaston (XXes.). Tunisia. Author of Nos martyrs sous la botte nazie (Marthyrs under Nazi boots)1943.
GUEDJ Max (XXes.). Algeria. Poet and Fiction author Le voyage en Barbarie (Travelling in Berber Land).
GUEDJ Éliahou Haï (1830-?). Tunisia. Rabbi. Educator. Rabbi. Poet. Author of Ma’assé hacha’achou’im (A tale of joy).

GUEZ Mathilda (1918-1990). Tunisia.Member of the Israeli parliament as a Labor representative.
GUEZ Paul (1898-1972). Tunisia. Officer in the France army during WWI and WWII. Author of Six mois sous la botte nazie (Six months under the booth).

ERGAZ Yossef (1685-1730). Italy. Rabbi. Opposed Néhémiah Hia Hayoun, a follower of Shabetai Zvi.


Azoulay, Hayim Yossef Shem Hagdolim (the names of the great)

AZOULAY Haïm Yossef David (Hida) (1724-1807) Chém haguédolim va’ad lahakhamim (The names of the Great Council of Sages).

Levi, J et. al. 2000        Dictionnaire biographique du monde Juif Sepharade et Mediteranean, Editions Elysee, Montreal.

Toledano, J. 1983        La saga des familles, Les juifs du Maroc et leurs noms, Editions Stavit, Tel Aviv

Laredo A. 1978           Les noms des juifs au Maroc