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Surname Maisel - Meaning and Origin

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Maisel: What does the surname Maisel mean?

The surname Maisel is of German origin and it is derived from the Middle High German term "maise" which means "tithe". A tithe traditionally refers to the one-tenth part of something, such as income, paid as a contribution to a religious organization or compulsory tax to the government. It means that the name Maisel could have originated among those who either collected or paid tithes and it was perhaps initially an occupational surname. Over time, it has become a family name and is relatively common in Germany. It should be noted that the exact origin and meaning of surnames can vary, depending on regional uses and evolution over time; language evolution, regional dialects, and movement of people can influence surname meanings.

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Maisel: Where does the name Maisel come from?

The last name Maisel is most common in Germany today. According to the MyHeritage website, as of 2020, the Maisel surname is most frequent in Germany, with an estimated 7,500 individuals bearing the surname. The name is also common among the German Jewish community, many of whom are descendants of German-Jewish immigrants who arrived in Europe and North America in the nineteenth century.

While the Maisel surname can be found throughout Germany, the highest concentration is in the south of the country, particularly in Bavaria, which is home to the states of Franken, Schwaben and Niederbayern. Some of the most populous towns where Maisel is commonly found include Munich, Berlin, Frankfurt, Nuremberg, Hamburg and Bonn.

The Maisel name is also found in other parts of Europe, in particular Austria and Switzerland. The name is most commonly found in eastern Austria, where it is one of the most common Jewish names in the country. While the precise origin of the name is unclear, it is believed that it derived from the Hebrew name Meïser, which means “one who is God’s messenger” or “representative of God”.

Outside of Europe, the Maisel surname can be found in the United States and Canada, largely among Jewish families of German and Austrian descent. The name is also common in a number of other countries, including Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela and India.

Variations of the surname Maisel

Maisel is a surname originating from the Central European region of Bohemia. It is a derivative of the Germanic male given name ‘Majsel’, which itself is a diminutive form of ‘Majero’, which means ‘great lord’. Alternative spellings of the surname include Maissel, Maisell, Maise, Meisel, and Maiselj. Variants of Maisel also exist in several languages across Central and Eastern Europe, such as the Polish ‘Majszlag’, Yiddish ‘Maisel’ and Czech ‘Myslák’.

Variations of the surname have arisen over the centuries, with some of the more common spellings being used in areas where German or Yiddish was spoken, such as Austria, Germany, Hungary, Slovakia, and Romania. In countries where Romance languages were spoken, such as Italy and Croatia, the spelling has evolved to resemble the local equivalent of the surname, such as Maiser, Maisol, Maigl and Maigli. With emigration to other parts of the world, the surname has also developed in countries with different alphabets, such as Maïsel in France, Mæsel in Denmark, Máisel in Spain, and Maiscul and Maisark in Russia.

The surname is derived from the old Middle High German term 'maisloğ', which means 'middleman' or 'mediator', a name that was originally given to one who acted as a go-between, particularly between two parties involved in some form of financial transaction. As such, the name would have been particularly common among Jews in the Middle Ages who were commonly engaged in professions associated with money or trading.

Famous people with the name Maisel

  • Amy Maisel: a Development Executive in Film and Television.
  • Brady Maisel: a Professional golfer on the PGA Tour.
  • Chris Maisel: a Professional baseball player.
  • David Maisel: an American entrepreneur, investor and philanthropist.
  • Doreen Maisel: an American actress and singer.
  • Eric Maisel: an American psychologist, creativity coach, and author of many books.
  • Gilbert Maisel: a former four-star Admiral in the United States Navy.
  • Jacob Maisel: an American track and field athlete.
  • Jason Maisel: American singer and songwriter.
  • Joel Maisel: an American television writer, producer and director.
  • Jordan Maisel: an American Paralympic volleyball player and reigning wheel chair basketball champion.
  • Laura Maisel: an American novelist and poet.
  • Robbie Maisel: an American television producer and director.
  • Ronnie Maisel: an American high jumper.
  • Sammy Maisel: a Jewish-American comic actor and performer.
  • Stephen Maisel: an American architect and urban planner.
  • Trachoma-Hillel Maisel: a Jewish Rabbi, teacher and author.

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