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Home: Surnames: Valcarcel Family Genealogy Forum

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Valcárcel in Galicia
Posted by: Carlos Valcárcel Ribeiro Date: February 19, 2001 at 06:44:25
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Well, I don't know very well in which language should I write this message. I don't use to speak english nor spanish... I use to speak galician (the vernacular variety of portuguese commonly spoken in Galicia). I also speak french and catalan.

My name's Carlos Valcárcel and I live in Santiago de Compostela, the capital of Galicia. My father's family come from the galician province of Lugo (municipalities of Sárria and Láncara), where I still have a lot of cousins. It's suprinsing to know that there are branches of the Valcárcel family in the USA and in England! I knew that some branches lived in South America and in Philippines.

Well, I come from the Valcárcel that remained in Galicia :) I think I can give some information regarding the meaning of our family name (I'm linguist at the University of Santiago...). So, Valcárcel it's supposed to come fron latin VALEM CARCEREM (in accusative case) that means "narrow valley". This justifies the toponyme "Veiga de Valcárce", the village of our origins that can be found in a narrow valley of the galician linguistic zone of the Ancares Mountains. This little village belongs nowadays to the province of León, in the autonomous community of Castilla-León (Spain), but it belonged to the Kingdom of Galicia until the XIXth century. So galician is still spoken in Veiga de Valcarce. Valcarce is as well the name of the river that passes through this village.

You can find lots of people called Valcárce(l) in Galicia (above all in the eastern zone of the province of Lugo)and León (above all in the galician speaking zone of Ancares and O Bierzo).

I didn't know the brazilian variant "Walcace", but "Valcárcel" and "Valcarce". The last one seems to be the original one regarding to the rules of phonetical evolution from latin to galician/portuguese language. So "Valcárcel" could be a catilianization of the original form, still conserved in the name of the village and the river...

Nowadays some famous writers of galician litterature have this family name...

I'd like to know more things about all the Valcárce(l)s living all aroud the world. My e-mail adress is:

Até a próxima,


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