Surname Freedlander - Meaning and Origin
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Freedlander: What does the surname Freedlander mean?
The last name Freedlander is an occupational name derived from a Jewish tradition. It is derived from “feredl,” a German word that means “free land”, and was given as a surname to those who were allowed to own, till, and use land belonging to the local lords or landlords. This freedom was typically granted in exchange for a tax or service, such as yearly payments or military service.
The Freedlander name has likely been in use since the Middle Ages, when Jews lived in ghettos and had few rights, but were often allowed more freedom and less discrimination if they took on a specific skill or trade that benefitted the lords or landlords who owned the land. Owning and managing land was one such trade, and thus the Freedlander name came into use.
Jewish immigrants who bore the Freedlander name eventually made their way to the United States and other countries by the 19th century. By the early 20th century, Freedlanders had spread throughout the United States, Europe, and even to Latin America.
Today, the Freedlander surname is a reminder of the Jewish history and experience of discrimination and exclusion. It is also a reminder of the courage and resilience of the descendants of this proud and resilient community, who were able to carve out a home for themselves and their families despite the opposition faced. The Freedlander name will continue to honor those hardships and freedoms endured by those who bore it.
Freedlander: Where does the name Freedlander come from?
The last name Freedlander is most likely of German or Ashkenazi Jewish descent. Though the exact origin and etymology of the name is unclear, the name is still found primarily in areas of Europe where Jews migrated for centuries—Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, and Russia.
In the United States, Freedlander is more common among those with Jewish heritage. Though it is not a common name in the general population, it is likely that many people of Jewish heritage living in the U.S. today are descended from those who immigrated from these European countries.
In the United Kingdom, Freedlander is not nearly as common, as the majority of Jewish immigrants to the islands came from Russia and Poland during the 19th and early 20th centuries.
As a result, Freedlander is now most commonly found in areas with a large Jewish population—generally in major cities such as New York, Los Angeles, Miami, and Chicago. On the whole, the Freedlander surname is not widely spread but can still be found in particular pockets.
Variations of the surname Freedlander
The surname Freedlander is relatively uncommon, and can be found in many forms across several countries. Some of the variants, spellings and surnames with the same origin as Freedlander include Freudlander, Freadlander, Freidlander, Freidlender, Froydlander, Froidland, Friedlander, Frydland, Frydlander, and Froiland.
The surname Freidlander is commonly found in Germany, originating from the Middle High German word Krüt, meaning “vegetation” or “soil”. Surnames of the same origin can also be found in Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia, and the Czech Republic. Most variants are derived from the familiar Germanic ‘freed’ and ‘land’ combination, and it has been suggested that this was originally a nickname for a freed serf, or a person who had reclaimed wasteland.
In the United States, the spelling of Freedlander is more common than variants. This is believed to have originated from the migration of Jews from Eastern Europe between the 19th and 20th centuries. The Austrian surname Froidland can be found in the US, as well as in Latin American countries such as Argentina and Uruguay.
The variant Freedman is also present in some English-speaking countries such as the United States and the United Kingdom. This variant is derived from the Ashkenazi Jewish practice of adding “-man” to the end of surnames to indicate a person’s occupation. It therefore indicates that the name may have originated from a person whose occupation involved the free use of land.
In short, the surname Freidera/Freidlender/Freedlander and its various variants, spellings and surnames of the same origin are found in several countries across Europe and the Americas. It has a historic origin that cannot be truly verified, but it is likely to be related to an occupation involving free use of land.
Famous people with the name Freedlander
- Zane Freedlander: Producer/Director of numerous documentaries and commercial videos
- David Freedlander: Journalist, editor, and author
- William Freedlander: Award-winning composer and Broadway producer
- Larry Freedlander: Renowned fashion designer
- Sarah Freedlander: Film and television actress
- Ralph Freedlander: Musician and leader of the jazz trio, Ralf Freedlanders Trio
- Richard Freedlander: Entrepreneur and founder of the Freedlander Media Company
- Carole Freedlander: Mental health counselor and life coach
- Cassandra Freedlander: Television host and anchor for CBS News
- Bruce Freedlander: Creative director, director, and producer of commercial television and film