Notes to Buber

Here, you can leave notes for me to answer. Be aware, I’ll make these public, so others might weigh in as well. I’m doing this as a number of people have left comments on the “About BBP” page, suggesting I need a spot for people to leave random thoughts and comments about Basque Culture and this site.

66 thoughts on “Notes to Buber”

  1. I am writing a book on old time sheepherders and looked for a recipe on making bread the way they did. I hope you don’t mind that I am including it in my book. I will give it the appropriate citation.

    1. Hi Conchita, I have no issues as long as you credit the original author of the recipe. I look forward to seeing your book!

  2. I have traced my Irish Ancestry back to the Basque Provinces,using DNA.I have no idea what the Basque Equivalent to my Irish Surname would be.My last name is GINNANE….and my ggrandfather came from County Clare in the Republic of Ireland.I would readily accept some suggestions as to where to start with this.I’ve been a Family Historian for many years.
    Thank you for any help you may be able to provide.
    Danny Ginnane-Gannon in Charleston,SC

  3. In taking a look at my Irish Ancestry which dates back to the 1600’s in County Clare in the Republic of Ireland….this is what came up!!..
    Trinity College in Dublin,Ireland asked if they might come out to our family cemetery on Coney Island(not the one in NY)…but the one in the Shannon River just off the Coast of County Clare in Ireland.( the way, is Gaelic for “rabbit”).My family(GINNANE) had recently cleared the cemetery…exposing stones that dated back to the 1600’s…in the Church Graveyard.Trinty removed one bone from a grave dating back to the 1600’s….and did a DNA Test on it.It was of Basque Origin.Reading the articles associated with this Basque Website…I’ve learned that Basque Sailors were Whalers.Is it possible that they were whaling off the West Coast of Ireland in the 1500’s and 1600’s?
    Also,not associated with my GINNANE Family….but through my other research…I’ve come to learn that St.Ignatius of Loyola was Basque.Has anyone on this website done any research on St.Ignatius?
    I know he was born in the Province of Guipuzcoa….which brings another question to my mind!!…..were Surnames in the Basque Area connected in any way to the Provinces they came from…..hence if you came from Guipuzcoa….your Surname would begin with GU—–??
    I’d appreciate any feedback on my comments!!
    Thank You!
    Danny Ginnane-Gannon in Charleston,SC

    1. Danny, I just got back from Ireland yesterday. I was there for 3 weeks with two friends. Just before I left I received my 23 & me breakdown. I was over 60% Iberian and 3% Irish. I knew I had some Irish from my mother’s side of my family. We arrived in Cork and did the southern loop, all along the wild Atlantic Way, Bantry, Dingle, Doolin, Aran Islands, Blarney and finally back to Cork. I “felt” the Basque influence in the dance, the singing, the people, the fisheries etc., especially around Dingle, the Skellig Islands are haunting. Look how geographically close they are.
      The Irish pop over to Spain for just a weekend because it is so inexpensive to fly there. I loved visiting the cemeteries, so much history. It is green, lush like the Basque country. My daughter danced in the Oinkaris from Boise for over 25 years and I visited the Basque country in 2011, finally meeting some of my relatives, which are Blas’ relatives too. The surnames in BC are often of geographical origin. Our name, Uberuaga, means place of hot water, our family had a water bottling company in the tiny town of Urberuaga. When a Basque name ends in aga, it means “place of”. Anyway, I highly recommend going to Ireland and the Basque country if you haven’t yet. You will have a “spiritual chiropractic adjustment. Eskerrikasko
      Damiana Uberuaga

    2. This is what i know about the DNA connection between the Basques and the Irish particularly the West Irish.

      After the last ice ago Basques traveled north by sea. They did so because it was easier that way due to the fact that Europe was heavily forested at the time. (The basques pf that period were short and dark.) Those Basques ended up in what are now Russia, Sweden, Scotland, England, Wales, and Ireland. British DNA researchers have found different percentages of Basque DNA in Great Britain and Ireland. They found as little as 2% in the English and as high as 62% in the West Irish due to the isolation of the western part of Ireland.

      Your distant cousin,
      Gabriel “Gaby” Zamudio


    3. I believe most Basque surnames are indicative of a geographical location, a trade and/or place. My name is Uberuaga…Ur (water) Berua (hot) Aga (place of) Uberuaga is place of hot water. My family came from Bizcaya, the towns of Urberuaga, Munitibar and Ispaster. And yes, I have mostly always believed the Basques were in Ireland via fishing and looking for opportunities. I visited Ireland last September and had many emotional “hits” as I travelled the Ring of Kerry……Damiana Uberuaga

  4. I found your website when researching and antique item I found. Zazpiak Bat Crest on a copper jug/pot was sold on UK ebay sight and is very similar to the pot I have. Except the crest on my pot says “Deneck Bat” and the crest has the symbols for just French Basque: Lapurdi, Zuberoa, and Navarre. Can you translate “Deneck Bat” for me? I know “Bat” means “One” in English….
    Thank you!

    1. Hello Caroline! Sorry for the delay. “Deneck Bat” is an old spelling for what would now be “Danak Bat,” a Basque phrase that means “all are one.” it is a slogan for unity of all of the Basque province.

  5. I remember as a child at the Basque picnics, hearing the specific yelling or call. Was told that was the way the shepherds in the Pyrenees communicated. Is this true? I still hear it at current Basque picnics.

    Also, the Basque genealogy website, Bridge to the Pyrenees has a picture of my GGG Grand parents. I cried when I saw them. Very moving for me to have the faces to the names I have known for so long.

  6. Thank you, I mean, eskerrik asko, for sharing yourself here. I have known all my life my great grandfather was Basque. I knew next to nothing about it until last March, when my husband and I decided to take a quick trip to Donostia/Gernika/Busturia. During a very random drive while we were there, we had an absolute miracle. We spontaneously ran into my mother’s second cousin (they share a great grandfather). What a miracle of miracles. He showed us where their ancestral basseri is still located. I will forever be grateful for this miracle, which has opened up my entire Vizcayan Basque ancestry, previously completely closed to me. I’ve since read every related book and website I can get my hands on. Something lead me to this, for sure. Thank you for the work you’re doing.

    1. Deborah, that is really amazing, that you ran into family like that! Thank you for sharing! If you are ever interested in sharing your story in more detail, I’d be happy to post it on the page. Just let me know!

  7. Hi, I’m interested in learning more about my mother’s surname: Maytorena. Any help is appreciated. I’d eventually like to go to the Basque Country to find folks with this last name and explore the region of its origin. What resources would you recommend? Thanks!

  8. Hello!

    I wanted to know if you knew more information about the last name Igarzabal. I saw that you had a page about it, describing the coat of arms. I wanted to know if there is more info about it, or a picture about it.

    Thank you!

    1. Hi John, Thanks for the note. No, I don’t have any further information. There is a group basque-genealogy on Yahoo Groups that has people delving into these types of questions and they may be able to get you more information about Igarzabal.

  9. Greetings from the National Historical Commission of the Philippines!

    With our mandate to publish and disseminate historical works, the NHCP is currently working on a bio-bibliographical dictionary consisting of 245 biographies of Basques who came to and/or settled in the Philippines. Authored by Aitor Anduaga, this multi-volume work will also contain photographs and other visual materials that are related to Basques and their influence in the Philippines.

    In line with this, we request permission to use the photo of Higinio Uriarte Zamacona as a visual material for the book.

    We will give proper acknowledgement, and we assure you that the image will be used only for the abovementioned purpose.

  10. My wife is Francine Ospital (of some Basque decent) daughter of Jean Ospital, and grand daughter of also Jean Ospital (immigrated to US/California around 1890). With that said I am wanting to take her on a trip from the US to San Sebastian and would like a good tour company or person in that region to guide us.. Any suggestions are appreciated. email is

    1. Hmmm. I don’t know of any specific tour companies that I could recommend, unfortunately. I will see if I can’t ask around and find someone.

  11. Mil Eskerrik.
    On a trip to my grandmother’s village, Lekeitio in Viscaya, I observed many grave stones with the familiar Lauburu, which was expected, but I also saw many also had the star of david. I was wondering about this, is this common throughout Euskadi? What is the basis for this?d
    I remember my mother telling me a story that the Basque language is the language of Adam and Eve. The whole story is too long to repeat now, but I was wondering if this is the origin. Anyway, this is why’ Euskai is the ‘pure language of Adam ad Eve, the language that they used to talk directly to God, and also were able to talk to the animals. Because of this, Basques are able to communicate with the animals, which explains the closeness shepherds have with their dogs (my mother said that sheep were too stupid to talk to!).

    I was wondering if you were familiar with this and how common this story is.

    I hope you can help me with this, and thanks a lot for all the great information.

    1. Hi Mark,

      I have heard those kinds of stories, though only indirectly. There isn’t any real evidence for Basque being the “original” language, if such a thing can even be postulated. There are also stories that the Basques are descendants of Atlantis and even aliens.

      That said, there is, as far as I understand, a relatively strong Jewish presence not only in the Basque Country, but all of Spain. During the Inquisition, many Jewish people were forced to either leave or convert, and I think those that did convert, many might have kept some of their practices alive.

      Just coincidentally, I saw this article today. It might provide a little more information on this question:


  12. Hi – what a great site…

    I am travelling with a friend – we are going from Bilbao up to Bayonne over the course of a few days. We wanted to know where you think we could stop to watch Pelota..? We will be travelling around mid late March 2020.

    Thanks again.

    1. Will, I asked a friend of mine and he pointed me to an app, Pelota Mano, that you can use to find matches. I’ve not used it myself, so can’t comment on how it works, but hopefully this will give you some pointers on where to find a match to watch.

      1. Some more information from my friend:

        The best pilota experience is LABRIT on a Saturday night. Irunea Pamplona….. watch a few games ….you walk out and have dinner in the old part of town…

        LABRIT…. it is the Wrigley Field…. the Fenway Park…. the Lambeau Field of Pilota…. nothing like a Saturday night crowd at Labrit….. (except Anfield Road in Liverpool)

        1. Thank you so much for this.
          If I may ask one more request, would it be possible to ask if they know if there is a game on Friday nights as well, or only Saturday?
          We will download the app.
          Thank you!!

          1. Hi Will. Unfortunately, I don’t know any more about the schedule. I haven’t tried the app, so don’t know how well it might answer your question, but that is probably the best place to start. Sorry I’m not of more help.

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