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H.L. Mencken (1880–1956). The American Language. 1921.

Page 324

Zeller, Zellner, Zeltmacher, Zepp, Ziegfeld, Zabel, Zucker, Zuckermann, Ziegler, Zillman, Zinser and so on. They are all represented heavily, but they indicate neither the earliest nor the most formidable accretion, for underlying them are many Dutch names, e. g., Zeeman, and over them are a large number of Slavic, Italian and Jewish names. Among the first I note Zabludosky, Zachczynski, Zapinkow, Zaretsky, Zechnowitz, Zenzalsky and Zywachevsky; among the second, Zaccardi, Zaccarini, Zaccaro, Zapparano, Zanelli, Zicarelli and Zucca; among the third, Zukor, Zipkin and Ziskind. There are, too, various Spanish names: Zalaya, Zingaro, etc. And Greek: Zapeion, Zarvakos and Zouvelekis. And Armenian: Zaloom, Zaron and Zatmajian. And Hungarian: Zadek, Zagor and Zichy. And Swedish: Zetterholm and Zetterlund. And a number that defy placing: Zrike, Zvan, 6 Zwipf, Zula, Zur and Zeve.
  In the New York city directory the fourth most common name is now Murphy, an Irish name, and the fifth most common is Meyer, which is German and often Jewish. The Meyers are the Smiths of Austria, and of most of Germany. They outnumber all other clans. After them come the Schultzes and Krauses, just as the Joneses and Williamses follow the Smiths in Great Britain. Schultze and Kraus do not seem to be very common names in New York, but Schmidt, Muller, Schneider and Klein appear among the fifty commonest. 7 Cohen and Levy rank eighth and ninth, and are both ahead of Jones, which is second in England, and Williams, which is third. Taylor, a highly typical British name, ranking fourth in England and Wales, is twenty-third in New York. Ahead of it, beside Murphy, Meyer, Cohen and Levy, are Schmidt, Ryan, O’Brien, Kelly and Sullivan. Robinson, which is twelfth in England, is thirty-ninth in New York; even Schneider and Muller are ahead of it. In Chicago Olson, Schmidt, Meyer, Hansen and Larsen are ahead of Taylor, and Hoffman and Becker are ahead of Ward; in Boston Sullivan and Murphy are ahead of any English name save Smith; in Philadelphia Myers is just below Robinson. Nor, as I have said, is this great proliferation of foreign surnames confined to the large cities. There are whole