I never really heard this last name before. Does not sound like a common Italian surname. Any thoughts on the ethnic origins of the name? It somehow does not sound as deriving from the Latin roots of Italian.
email@example.com wrote:I never really heard this last name before. Does not sound like a common Italian surname. Any thoughts on the ethnic origins of the name? It somehow does not sound as deriving from the Latin roots of Italian.
Last name origin & meaning: Italian (mainly southern): probably from an Arabic personal name, based on either ̣tafūr ‘jumper’ or ̣tayfūr, a species of small bird.
You can see from this Surname Distribution Map that the surname TAFURI is found in 192 towns. Much of the concentration is in the Campania Region, with many others found in Lombardi, Puglia, and northern Sicily
This is very interesting regarding the name origin. @PippoM-and Tessa78, you each referenced Salerno and Campania. This confirms the location since this name is from my paternal family side who originated in Sala Consilina-Salerno, Campania. @dominique426-your link traces this name to Arabic origin. I must do further search on this for possible "Saracen" roots in this name. When I first heard the name-it somehow sounded like it has origins of Arab or Jewish roots, and not Italo-Latin. Thank you to all.
Above link -intriguing article on the Medici Dynasty and Italian Judaism (of which my paternal grandmother bears this name, and of which her mother -my paternal great grandmother was a TAFURI). This weblink site reinforces the Judaic roots of both surnames-MEDICI and TAFURI.
According to "Dictionary of Italian Surnames" by Emidio De Felice, Tafuri is found in the South, and sporadically in Liguria. It probably derives from a medieval name of Arabic origin (found in Genoa in 1133 and 1158 as "Tafur" and "Tafar") maybe coming from "tayfuri" (dish maker or dealer) or "taifur" ("inconstant", "changeble"). So, it was originally a name from a job or a nickname, found in seaside areas, mostly influenced by Arabs and Saracens. Jewish origin is not mentioned.
Giuseppe "Pippo" Moccaldi
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Thank you Pippo. I must look into possible Arab/Saracen roots of name. Seems it did in fact originate during the Middle Ages or Medieval period in Italy of either Saracen or Judaic origins. Probably with either the Saracen and/or Jewish merchant trade dealers in the major seaport cities. My paternal great grandparents were from Sala Consilina which I know is a city in the Vallo Di Diano area of Salerno Province very close to the border of Basilicata. I am curious to know if Sala Consilina during Middle Ages might've been a trade route either coming from the North to South or from Salerno seaport across and inward to cities like Sala Consilina. I know Sala Consilina has remnants of a castle used as a fortress for the Saracen invasions during Medieval Times. Seems they left a significant mark in this part of Campania -Southern Italy.