The paper presents the long-term project “Online Dictionary of Surnames in Germany” (“Digitales Familiennamenwörterbuch, DFD”), its conception, main objectives, and its technical realisation. By means of representative examples, the paper depicts how the project works along the categories of conflation, validation, specification or revision of etymologies so far proposed in standard references and the development of new ones. Exploiting new digital resources — especially with the help of new findings in surname geography, the surname stock can be captured and analysed all-encompassing and systematically. Surnames of foreign origin like English, French, Italian, Slavic, Baltic or Turkish are also considered. The importance of Slavic roots in German surnames is exemplified by the name Novak (‛new settler’) which ranks position 156 in the total frequency of German surnames. The article’s outlook discusses the importance and possibilities for future cooperation with surname projects in other countries like Poland, with a long-term perspective for a European network of surname dictionaries.
The authors discuss the main premises of the project “The most popular surnames in Poland — past and present. E-dictionary” which has been in development since July 2014 in IJP PAN in Krakow. They also present its basic aims and functions, progress already made and they compare it with other dictionaries of surnames. The authors describe several aspects of the dictionary related to IT and computers but also those concerned with onomastics and lexicography. Additionally, they pay particular attention to the information contained in specific parts of each entry.