Many people around the world are curious about Swedish last names, but there is still a lot of misinformation floating around on the topic. This article will deal with Swedish surnames in general and clear up some misconceptions.
The Swedish language has a relatively simple phonetic sound system, which means that it records pronunciation accurately. The Swedish alphabet has 29 letters, 1 special character and 7 vowels. This means that Swedish last names are relatively easy to pronounce for Swedish speakers, but can be difficult for people who aren’t familiar with the language.
The Swedish language also assigns gender to words, so Swedish surnames must denote whether they are inherited from the male or female side of the family. This is not true in most other languages, which is why Swedish names can be difficult to translate into non-Swedish tongues (and vice versa).
Swedish last names with meanings
Andersson, which means ‘son of Anders or Andrews’ is one of the most famous names around Sweden. It is also well known in the country and around the world because of Kennet Andersson, a famous soccer player.
Following the same logic, we can find a lot of Swedish family names:
Alexandersson, meaning ‘ son of Alexander’
Alfredsson, meaning ‘ son of Alfred’
Bengtsson, meaning ‘ son of Bengt’. Bengt is the Swedish form of Benedict, which means ‘Blessed one’ in Latin.
Davidsson, meaning ‘ son of David’
Claesson, meaning ‘ son of Claes’. Claes is the pet form of name Nikkola.
Gustafsson, meaning ‘ son of Gustav.’ Gustav is an Old Norse word, meaning ‘Staff of Geats’. ‘Geats’ is the name of an ancient tribe.
Mikaelsson, meaning ‘ son of Mikael’
Fransson, meaning ‘ son of Frans’
Eriksson, meaning ‘ son of Erik’
Gunnarsson, meaning ‘son of Gunnar’
Hakansson, meaning ‘son of Hakan’
Isaksson, meaning ‘son of Isac’
As mentioned in the beginning, swedes assign gender to words, so on the other hand we can find names like:
Andersdotter, meaning ‘daughter of’ Anders
Eriksdotter (daughter of Eric)
Hansdotter (daughter of Hans)
Larsdotter, meaning ‘daughter of Lars’
Sweden is part of Scandinavia, so it is only logical that we would find surnames of Scandinavian origins:
Nyborg, composed of ‘ny’ meaning ‘new’ and ‘borg’ meaning ‘castle’. It is a toponymic name for someone living near a new castle or fort.
Olander, a toponymic name for someone living in the islands of Oland or eastern Sweden.
Aaberg, meaning ‘ river of the mountain’. The name is of Swedish origin, composed of ‘aa’ meaning ‘river’ and ‘berg’ meaning ‘mountain’.
Risberg, meaning ‘brushwood mountains’. It is a toponymic name for a person who is from a farmstead.
Westberg, meaning ‘ western hills’. It is a toponymic name referring to someone from the western mountains.
Westergaard, (South African Origin, but popular in Scandinavia) an ornamental surname composed of ‘wester’ meaning ‘western’ and ‘gard’ meaning ‘courtyard’.
But there are so many more interesting Swedish surnames that you should know about like:
Wallin, meaning ‘powerful friend.’ It comes from the old English word ‘ Wealdwine,’ which means ‘ power-friend.’
Sundberg, the meaning of the Swedish name is composed of ‘Sund’ meaning ‘Strait’ and ‘berg’ meaning ‘ mountain.’
Bjork, meaning ‘ Birch tree.’
Hungerdahl, the name originating from Sweden’s capital Stockholm. It is composed of the Swedish words ‘h’ung’ meaning hungry and ‘dahhl’ meaning valley.
Westermark, composed from ‘West’ meaning West and ‘mark’ meaning ‘forest.’
Ekholm, composed of swedish words for ‘ek’ meaning a swedish tree and ‘holm’ meaning an island.
Alström, meaning ‘ old river.’ The name is associated with psychiatrist Carl- Henry Alström, who described the hereditary disorder Alström syndrome.
Blomqvist, meaning ‘ flower branch’. The name is associated with the fictional character Mikael Blomqvist from Stieg Larsson’s ‘The Millenium’ series.
Forsberg, meaning ‘mountain with a waterfall’
Dahlström, meaning ‘river valley’.
Lindberg, meaning ‘ Mountain of linden’. It originally comes from the mountains of Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.
Nordström, meaning ‘Northern River’.
Lindelöf, meaning ‘leaf of the lime tree ‘. Some of you may know this name from Manchester United’s centre back soccer player: Victor Lindelöf.
Wollter, meaning ‘leader of the army’. The name has been derived from the ancient Germanic word ‘Waltheri’.
Drakenberg, meaning ‘mountain of dragons’.
Winblad, meaning ‘wine leaf’. The name is associated with Ulla Winblad, a semi-fictional character in many of the famous musician Carl Michael Bellman’s works.
Ehrling, meaning ‘ heir of Clanchief’. It is a Scandinavian origin name, which means similar to a Prince.
Oustrup, coming from a Swedish word for cottage.
Stalhammar, from ‘stahl’ meaning steel and ‘hammar’ meaning hammer.
Wahlberg, Swedish swan and Swedish hill.
Ekström, ornamental surname composed of ‘Ek’ which means ‘oak tree’ and ‘ström’ which means ‘river’.
Nordin, meaning ‘of North’. Nordin in Arabic is ‘Nur-al-din’; ‘Nur’ meaning ‘light’ and ‘al-din’ meaning ‘religion’.
Sandberg, meaning ‘ Sand Mountain’.
Gunnarshaug, meaning Swedish swan’s pond.
We hope you found this information useful. Are there any other Swedish names you want us to add to the list?swe