Arrow Downward Arrow Downward Close Close Done Done Cart Cart clock clock
Personal guidance

We are always happy to help you! Contact us via e-mail or Whatsapp.

If you would like us to call you back, please provide your phone number and how you can be reached. We will be happy to call you for a personal consultation. WhatsApp

Surname Palefsky - Meaning and Origin

all surnames with 'P'

Palefsky: What does the surname Palefsky mean?

The last name Palefsky is of Jewish origin. It is an Ashkenazi Jewish name that originated in Central and Eastern Europe. The meaning of the surname is unknown, but it is believed to be derived from the Polish word palec, which translates to 'finger' in English. This could be a reference to an ancestor's physical feature, their trade, or perhaps an aspect of their personality.

Palefsky is an uncommon last name in the U.S., with fewer than 5,000 people bearing the surname. It is most common in the states of New York and New Jersey, followed by California and Florida. It is also common in Jewish communities of other countries, including Australia and Canada.

The Palefsky family is often thought of as a close-knit one, with strong family values and a strong sense of community. They view each other as a tight-knit group, and have an appreciation for helping others and standing up for what they believe in. The Palefsky family has notably been involved in philanthropy, supporting charitable causes around the world.

In conclusion, the last name Palefsky is an intriguing one with a rich cultural history and deep family values. It is an illustrious name with a long-standing legacy of charity and community service.

Order DNA origin analysis

Palefsky: Where does the name Palefsky come from?

The last name Palefsky is most commonly found today in Israel and the United States.

In Israel, the Palefsky name, spelled in Hebrew as Pelefski, is commonly found amongst members of the Ashkenazi Jewish community. The name is derived from the Yiddish stem “pale”, meaning “to spread” and “-f-”, meaning “upwards”; the -ski suffix was added to indicate the family’s origin. The first known Palefsky ancestor in Israel lived in 18th century Germany, and a few of his descendants settled in the newly-established State of Israel in 1948. There they established their own branch of the family, which has since spread throughout the country.

In the United States, Palefsky is more commonly known as the anglicized form, “Palefsky”, and is found amongst the descendants of Ashkenazi Jewish immigrants who came from Eastern Europe during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Most members of the Palefsky family in the United States can trace their roots to two siblings who escaped the anti-Semitic pogroms in Ukraine and arrived in America around the turn of the century.

Today, Palefsky is a relatively common last name in both Israel and the United States. In 2018, over 600 people in Israel bore the name, and over 1,200 individuals in the United States shared the same last name. An additional 2,800 people have the name in other countries, including Russia, Ukraine, Canada, and the United Kingdom.

Variations of the surname Palefsky

Palefsky (also spelled Palefski, Palensky, Palenski, Palinsky, Palfsky, Pelensky, Pelensky, Pelinsky, Pilensky, Pilensky, Pilinsky) is a surname of mainly Ashkenazi Jewish origin, derived from the Polish, Yiddish, and Ukrainian word palyey, meaning “mud.” It is thought to be a descriptive surname, identifying people who lived near swamps or mudflats. The surname may also be occupational, referring to people who made or did business with ash, a flammable mineral used in cremation, or to people who worked with soil in farming.

The Palefsky family has a long history, dating back to the 15th or 16th century when members of the family began to appear in Polish rabbinical records. The family moved from Poland to Vilnius in Belarus, and then to the nearby towns of Shklov and Mogilev. They then began to migrate West, with some settling in Vilna, Riga, and Latvia, while others moved further West to Ukraine, Slovakia, Hungary, and Austria. Many Palefskys eventually settled in the United States and Canada, specifically in the cities of New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago, and Montreal.

The Palefsky surname can be found in a variety of spelling variations, including Palefski, Palensky, Palenski, Palinsky, Palfsky, Pelensky, Pelenski, Pelinsky, Pilensky, Pilenski, and Pilinsky. It is possible that additional spellings exist, due to the inconsistent spelling and transcription of many Jewish names in the late 19th century. The variations are likely due to the multi-ethnic backgrounds of the Palefsky family, as well as the many languages spoken by Jews in the area in medieval Germany and Bohemia.

Famous people with the name Palefsky

  • Michele backs Palefsky: an American classical double bass player
  • Jeff Palefsky: an American politician
  • Mae Palefsky: an American actress
  • Aharon Palefsky: an Israeli rabbi and scholar
  • Samantha Palefsky: an American poet
  • Robin Palefsky: an American television producer
  • Jocelyn Palefsky: an American theater director and producer
  • Jeffrey Palefsky: an American clinical and research professor
  • Shereen Palefsky: an American fantasy writer
  • Michelle Palefsky: an American musical composer

Other surnames


Write comments or make additions to the name "Palefsky"

Your origin analysis