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Meaning and Origin of: Kaplan

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Last name origins & meanings:

  1. Jewish (Ashkenazic): surname used as a translation of Cohen, from German Kaplan or Polish kapłan ‘chaplain’, ‘curate’.
  2. German, Swedish, Czech, and Slovenian; Slovak (Kaplán); Polish (Kapłan); Hungarian (Káplán): status name for a deacon, chaplain, or curate (ultimately from Late Latin capellanus (see Chaplin 1), or a nickname for someone resembling a clergyman).
  3. Turkish: from kablan ‘tiger’, hence a nickname for someone thought to resemble a tiger, typically in having indomitable courage or spirit. In the form Kaplanis, this is also found as a Greek surname, with various patronymic and other derivatives (Kaplanidis, Kaplanoglou, Kaplanellis, etc.)
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