Recorded in many forms including Skacel, Skalalik, Skakunas, Skala, Skalova, Skalaska, Skalaski, this is a surname of Eastern European origins. In its different forms, and there are many of them, it is recorded in the Balkans, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Greece, Romania, Poland, and probably other countries as well. There are known to be at least two possible origins. The first is from the Polish word "skata" meaning a rock or crag, and hence is topographical for somebody who lived by such a place. Topographical names were amongst the first to become hereditary as natural or man made features in the countryside, made for easy identification. The second possibility is from the Czech medieval word "skarely" meaning sour faced, and hence a nickname for a person who was perceived by his or sometimes her, associates to be a bit of a misery. However given the robust humour of the medieval period it is always possible that the complete reverse may have applied! Unfortunately whilst many surnames of Northern Europe can be traced back to the 14th century or even earlier in publically available records, this is not so in much of Eastern Europe, and particularly those areas which have suffered under Communist rule for the past half century or more. In this case examples of the surname include Paulina Skalska of Sereth in Bukovina, Romania, on July 10th 1864, and Anton Skakalik of Bofmisch, Czech Republic, on May 7th 1866.
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