Feb. 21, 1805

Patent, issued by Francis I, Emperor of Austria [Present-day Austria]: “Throughout the Jewry, Hebrew family names, or any names referring to a town or place, are hereby abolished. Every single person is to choose a given, German name, and keep it, unaltered, for life. As of June 1, 1805, all circumcision books and birth registers must be kept in the German language. Anyone who is found to use any other name than the chosen German first and last name, will be punished with a fine of 50 Rhenish guilders.” [Researcher’s note: The value of a Rhenish guilder, 200 years ago, was approximately the same as a contemporary U.S. dollar; thus, 50 fl. rhn. is equivalent to US$50.]
Fauller, Chrysostomus. Gesetze, Verordnungen und Vorschriften für die Polizei-Verwaltung im Kaiserthume Oesterreich: Erschienen in den Jahren 1740 bis Ende 1825, und in alphabetisch-chronologischer Ordnung zusammengestellt, mit vorzüglicher Rücksicht auf Nieder-Oesterreich, Zweiter Band (Laws, Ordinances and Regulations for the Administration of Police: Published in the Years 1740 Until the End of 1825, and Compiled in Chronological Order, Under Excellent Consideration of Lower Austria, Volume Two). Geistinger: Vienna, 1828. Page 300. Researched by Dominik Jacobs 3/2/2020