[APG Public List] Abbreviations of given names

PLDunford PLDunford at cox.net
Tue Mar 8 11:16:05 MST 2011

One thought here is that these abbreviations came from the time that the names were “Latinized”.  Here is a list from:




Ioannes        John

Jno.             John    Abbr. of Johannes; not Jonathan. It is always John.

Johes (underscore indicates superscript) John

Johannes       John

Joannes         John


Abbreviating John may not seem to save space, but abbreviating Johannes does.


Note that Jonathan is missing and may not have had a Latin version. It would be interesting to check the 16-17th century baptismal records for a Jonathan, and follow him through life. I did find (at Ancestry.com baptismal records) a bunch of Jonathans and a couple of Jonathus and Jonathas names, but these are transcriptions, not the original images, so we don’t know what was really written there.


Just for kicks, I checked the (British) National Archives for the Canterbury records from 1500-1600, since they would likely be in Latin. There were almost 9900 for John, only one for a Jonathan Gale alias Hutchins in 1560. It would be instructive, I suppose, to take a look at the original wills, probates and sentences to see how the names were abbreviated in a Latin document. There were only 27 from 1600-1650. It would appear from this that the use of the name Jonathan began to arise after 1600. Why?


So:  http://www.behindthename.com/name/jonathan 



Gender: Masculine 

Usage: English <http://www.behindthename.com/nmc/eng.php> , German <http://www.behindthename.com/nmc/ger.php> , Scandinavian <http://www.behindthename.com/nmc/sca.php> , Dutch <http://www.behindthename.com/nmc/dut.php> , Biblical <http://www.behindthename.com/nmc/bibl.php>  

Other Scripts: יוֹנָתָן <http://www.behindthename.com/support/transcribe.php?type=HB&target=Ywonatan>  (Ancient Hebrew) 

Pronounced: JAHN-ə-thən (English), YO-nah-tahn (German)  [key] <http://www.behindthename.com/pronunciation.php>  

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