This is a Polish patronymic variant form which derives from the Old German "karch", a metonymic occupational name for a medieval transport contractor. The English equivalent would be Carter, for which no diminutive exists, or the French-Channel Isles Carterel, i.e., son of Carter. The Polish form, with the suffix "-ski", originally indicated association with a particular place, and was therefore regarded as equivalent to the French "de", or the German "von", implying noble, or at least gentry status. This is probably the case, as a Polish Coat of Arms of a blue field, an arrow, point up surmounting a crescent, between two knights' spurs, all gold, is given for the name. The usual spelling form is Karczinski, but other forms with identical meanings include: Karchowski, Karchewski, Kharchinski and Karczinski. The name recording examples and link spellings include: Hans Karch, of Pfalz, Bayern, on March 25th 1599, whilst on October 30th 1770, Julianam Karchin was married at Germersheim, Bayern. Unfortunately, at the present time (1991) early Polish records are not yet available, if existent. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Johan Karreler, which was dated 1281, in the "Rolls of the State of Schwabia", Germany, during the reign of Rudolf of Hapsburg, Holy Roman Emperor, 1273 - 1291. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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