German Genealogy Tip #22: “Geb.” or “Geborene” Indicates Maiden Name

When reading old German documents, you will often see the term “geb.” or “geborene” in the middle of a married woman’s name. This is not part of her name. It means the same thing that we mean in English when we write “née” or “maiden name”. For instance, if a woman is named Elisabeth Scheuch (wife of Johannes Scheuch), and her maiden name was Ziegler, her name might be written as “Elisabeth Scheuch geb. Ziegler” (Elisabeth Scheuch née Ziegler) or “Johannes Scheuch und dessen Ehefrau Elisabeth geb. Ziegler” (Johannes Scheuch and his wife, Elisabeth née Ziegler).

5 thoughts on “German Genealogy Tip #22: “Geb.” or “Geborene” Indicates Maiden Name

  1. Roy Davies

    Thanks for this useful tip. I have also seen “geb” written in some death records where it lists a woman’s father and husband, where it seems to mean “of” or “descended from” (unless anyone knows a more literal translation), e.g.

    “Josepha “geb” Stephan Zyzik eheweib des Freigärtners Jacob Ciba”

    “Josepha “descended from” Stephan Zyzik wife of the free gardener Jacob Ciba”

  2. Ruth Linde

    I have really enjoyed reading this site. I am researching my Danish (Schleswig Holstein) and German ancestors. The ancestors who remained in those areas would have been proud to see how their children (and their descendants) who migrated in 1866-74 have battled against the odds and succeeded in life. Many of them lost multiple children in infancy. Life was hard. I was troubled by a first name for one female ancestor, Geborne, particularly when I received information that her name was Anna Charlotte. Thank you for solving that problem and many others with your site. I am researching Schmidt, Buhring, Linde, Selk Lombladt, Peters, Raddeker (I’ve found 16 different spellings), Siemon, Bones (I doubt that spelling), Hope (probably should be Hoppe). Migration to Australia was also chain-migration,
    particularly to gold diggings (and other minerals).

  3. Michael Jaeger

    How do I interpret the following from someone’s family tree?

    Volle geb Schierholz father of Richter geb Schierholz


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