Scandinavian Naming Practices

There is a web site that you might enjoy, with information relating to the naming practices of our Swedish ancestry. (It also contains information on Norse, Danish and Finish.) The information below and the links have been taken from that web site. Have FUN and learn some information on how those Swedish names are formed. If you have any questions, please feel free to e-mail me. E-Mail Pat Adams

You can better pronounce those Scandinavian Names using the following rules of thumb. Plain text versions of the special characters are also given. Norway, Denmark, and Iceland use the main characters shown, those wacky Swedes insist on being different.

Historical Notes

The region for which the names are appropriate includes modern Denmark, Norway, and Sweden, but the names can be used in any region influenced by these people. During the 13th century Christian names, such as the names of saints or from Biblical sources, began to replace the old Norse names.

Members of the noblilty use patronomikons as surnames. This takes the form of (name)-sen in Denmark and Norway and (name)-son in Sweden. Noble women use the suffix -datter, -dottir, or -dotter in Denmark, Norway, and Sweden, respectively to indicate who their father was. Sometimes noble women keep this surname after marriage. Honorifics are "herr" for men and "fru" for women.

Commoners often identified themselves by their place of origin or by some distinctive feature, e.g., Snorre the Bald, Freya of Asgard.

Sites Relating to Swedish Names

Akademialmanackan Namnlista
A catalog of name days from the Svenska Akademien. Users can view the names either chronologically or alphabetically, and variants and pet names are listed alongside the original forms.

Namn - names used in Sweden
Name days, origins, and meanings (in Swedish), from DataDux.

Släktforskarförbundets Namnlista
Swedish names with notes about their origins (in Swedish) from Håkan Skogsjö.

Swedish Names
A collection of names from Kate Monk

My List of Swedish Names
Monikers drawn from a Scandinavian name day calendar as well as several old Swedish family trees.

Swedish Name Day Calendar
Swedish names and name days for 1997 from ScandinaviUS .

Swedish Feminine Names from the 13th Century
An analysis by Lindorm Eriksson (Christer Romson) of a volume containing a slew of Swedish economic and legal documents written between 1286-1310. This page lists the names of the ~230 women mentioned in these papers (although many names are repeats).

Return to the HomePage for the Swedish Connection in Kansas

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