Joachim Sparkuhl’s Miscellany

The Sparkuhl Name


The meaning of the name, if any, is unclear. Zoder (1968) speculates that it is derived from the Middle Low German word “sparkule,” defined in the Deutsches Woerterbuch as a small pond for holding fish intended for imminent use.  Deutsches Woerterbuch also links “sparkule” to the use of Sparkuhle as a family name in Bremen.


“SPARKULE, f. 'ein kleiner teich, woraus man die hineingesetzten fische, die man bald brauchen will, jederzeit gleich wieder herausnehmen kann.'brem. wb. suppl. 326. vgl.Sparkuhle als eigennamen in Bremen. “












Allewelt (1981) refers to “Sparkule” as a location name (“oben den Sparkulenn”) in the 1570 tax registers for the district of Schöningen.


Zoder (1968) also gives an alternative origin from the Middle High German “spar-kalk” or “sparkalk” defined as gypsum plaster derived from burnt lime.  Obscure indeed!