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Message Board > Faros family from Kythera to Cape Town

Faros family from Kythera to Cape Town

submitted by Joan Krygsman on 20.07.2019


Hello! I am working on the family tree for my stepmother, Jacqueline Maree. Jacquie was born in 1953 in Cape Town, South Africa to Percival John Maree and Muriel Irene Adams, both born and raised in the Western Cape of South Africa. HOWEVER, Jacquie's DNA came back with the closest cousin connections of the last name Faros, from the island of Kythera. After some back and forth with DNA relatives, we discovered that two men from Kythera - Dimitri Faros (abt 1870 - 1941) and his son Yanni (1893-1950) - spent over a decade in South Africa, in the time leading up to Muriel's birth in 1921.

Apparently Dimitri came over first in the early years of the century, and started up a couple of restaurants/pubs in Cape Town, and in Upington. His son Yanni joined him as a young ager around 1909 or so. It seems they were both gone by 1923 (Australia in Yanni's case - Dimitri probably returned to Kythera, as that is where he apparently died).

So, for current lack of a better explanation, it is possible that one of them is Muriel's father - her birth certificate lists her parents as John and Johanna Adams. There does not seem to be any connection to Greece (other than a tenuous one - a witness at her baptism was Maria Appolos, which sounds a bot like a Greek name, I think?)

Any sort of information on the Faros family would be so gratefully received. We are very much looking forward to figuring out this mystery! 

Joan Krygsman

submitted by
Elli Petrocheilou
on 05.09.2019

Dear John, I do not have any info that could help you other than this: John is the English equivalent of Yanni/Gianni, so it could definitely stand for a Greek man originally named Yanni. The other point is that Greeks who migrated, esp. to English speaking countries, more often than not adopted either the English equivalent of their first name (as described above) or Anglicised their surnames to the point where it was impossible to figure out which the source might have been -unless you knew it- or, more frequently, did both. So, yes, the names you present us with could well be hiding someone of Greek origin. I'd say, if the dates you have so far, seem to be making sense, then you might be closer than what you think. Good luck w/your search, I hope you'll be able to fill the gaps. Best, Elli

submitted by
John Minchin
on 09.09.2019

Hi Joan I may have some info that might help you, but I am away from home at present. I will contact you when I get home in October Regards John

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