104 Swedish Last Names With Meanings And History

Rajnandini Roychoudhury
Dec 12, 2023 By Rajnandini Roychoudhury
Originally Published on Oct 25, 2020
Edited by Monisha Kochhar
cool last names in sweden

A name with a strong meaning boosts the significance of the character. Plus, most of our favorite books have compelling character names that make them memorable, like Heathcliff from 'Wuthering Heights' or Gertrude from 'Hamlet'.

Swedish surnames have quite an interesting backstory. When you look at a Swedish family tree, you see that the last names have been changed a lot.

The reason is that earlier, in Sweden, the Swedish people used the patronymic system for names. A patronymic name is created when a prefix or suffix is attached to the father's name.

For example, one of the most common surnames in Sweden is Andersson; the name Andersson can be split into 'Anders' and 'son'. This means the person is the son of Anders. Similarly, for the given name Andesdotter, it means the person is the daughter of Anders.

This is the reason why we see Swedish names ending in 'SON.' The suffix '-son,' here, means 'descendants of.'

In Sweden, surnames were also developed from a few other Swedish naming systems that were non-patronymical, names, based on the person's character, geography, and occupation. Occupational based last names were less common.

Two-part surnames were also very common in Sweden. Mostly, these were based on nature words. Either two nature words were joined together, for example, 'Ström' (river) + 'berg'(mountain) formed Strömberg or one nature word with a common Greek/Latin suffix like -Ander, -ell, etc.

Read on for Swedish last names, and for more last names, take a look at Icelandic Last Names and Slavic Last Names.

Common Swedish Last Names

The most common names in a region can reveal a lot about that place's tradition and history. So you can look up for the popular Swedish surnames and know a lot about Sweden. Here is a list of the most common last names found in Sweden.

1.Andersson, meaning 'son of Anders or Andrews.' The name is associated with a famous Swedish football player, Kennet Andersson.

2.Arvidsson, meaning 'son of Arvid'.

3.Berg, meaning 'mountain.' A toponymical name for someone who came from or lived on a hill.

4.Bjorklund, meaning ' Forest of birches'.

5.Claesson, meaning ' son of Claes'. Claes is the pet form of name Nikkola.

6.Danielsson, meaning 'son of Daniel'.

7.Gustafsson, meaning ' son of Gustav.' Gustav is an Old Norse word, meaning 'Staff of Geats'. 'Geats' is the name of an ancient tribe.

8.Fransson, meaning ' son of Frans'.

9.Henriksson, meaning ' son of Henrik'.

10.Johansson, meaning ' son of Johan.'

11.Lindgren, meaning ' branch of a lime tree.' The name is associated with the popular Swedish writer, Astrid Lindgren.

12.Lundberg, meaning ' mountain grove.'

13.Lundgren, meaning ' grove branch.' The name is linked with Swedish actor Dolph Lundgren.

14.Mikaelsson, meaning ' son of Mikael'.

15.Nordlund, meaning 'small forest in the North.'

16.Nyqvist, meaning ' new branch.' The name is associated with famous Swedish actor Mikael Nyqvist.

17.öberg, meaning ' Hilly Island.'

18.Sjöberg, meaning ' mountain in a sea'. The name can be linked with popular Swedish poet Erik Sjöberg.

19.Sundberg, the Swedish surname composed of 'Sund' meaning 'Strait' and 'berg' meaning ' mountain.'

20.Wallin, meaning 'powerful friend.' It comes from the old English word ' Wealdwine,' which means ' power-friend.'

Popular Swedish Last Names

Wooden map of Europe including Sweden

There are certain names that just stand out from the rest. Here is a special list of a few of the most popular Swedish surnames:

21.Abrahamsson, meaning ' son of Abraham.'

22.Alström, meaning ' old river.' The name is associated with psychiatrist Carl- Henry Alström, who described the hereditary disorder Alström syndrome.

23.Axelsson, meaning ' son of Axel.'

24.Blomqvist, meaning ' flower branch'. The name is associated with the fictional character Mikael Blomqvist from Stieg Larsson's 'The Millenium' series.

25.Bjorke, meaning 'birch'. It is also an Icelandic name given to girls, meaning birch.

26.Dahlström, meaning 'river valley'.

27.Eklund, meaning ' oak forest'.

28.Ekström, ornamental surname composed of 'Ek' which means 'oak tree' and 'ström' which means 'river'.

29.Engström, meaning ' river near a meadow'.

30.Forsberg, meaning 'mountain with a waterfall'.

31.Hellström, an ornamental name composed of 'hall' meaning 'rock' and 'ström' meaning 'river'.

32.Holmberg, meaning ' a hill on an island'.

33.Jansson, meaning 'son of Jans'.

34.Lindberg, meaning ' Mountain of linden'. It originally comes from the mountains of Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.

35.Lundin, meaning 'of the grove'.

36.Nordin, meaning 'of North'. Nordin in Arabic is 'Nur-al-din'; 'Nur' meaning 'light' and 'al-din' meaning 'religion'.

37.Nordström, meaning 'Northern River'.

38.Persson, meaning 'son of Per'.

39.Sandberg, meaning ' Sand Mountain'.

40.Wickström, meaning 'Bay stream'.

Unique Swedish Last Names

Everyone likes the touch of uniqueness.  Having a unique name can help the character stand out. This list of unique Swedish Last names provides you with a wide variety of cool and meaningful surnames to choose from:

41.Ahlgren, meaning 'older branch'.

42.Bergman, meaning ' mountain man'. The name is associated with Swedish actress, Ingrid Bergman.

43.Bergson, meaning 'son of Berke'. The surname is associated with the popular character Bill Bergson, of Swedish author, Astrid Lindgren.

44.Engberg, meaning 'meadow mountain'.

45.Holmgren, an ornamental Swedish surname composed of 'holm' meaning 'island', and 'gren' meaning 'branch'.

46.Isaksson, meaning 'son of Isac'.

47.Lagerlöf, meaning ' laurel leaves'. The name is associated with Swedish author Selma Lagerlöf, the first woman to win Nobel Prize in Literature.

48.Lindelöf, meaning 'leaf of the lime tree '.

49.Lindqvist, meaning 'linden twig'.

50.Salander, the name is associated with the fictional character Lisbeth Salander from Stieg Larsson's 'The Millenium' series.

51.Strömberg, meaning 'mountain with a river'.

52.Thunberg, an ornamental surname, describing a person who came from a fenced area on a hill. The name is associated with Greta Thunberg, a popular, young environmental activist from Sweden.

53.Wahlström, meaning 'meadow by stream'.

54.Wollter, meaning 'leader of the army'. The name has been derived from the ancient Germanic word 'Waltheri'.

Patronymic Swedish Last Names

best last names for your character

If you want to name your character based on the traditional and most common Patronymic system, we provide you with a list of thirty patronymic Swedish last names. Although patronymic names containing the suffix - dotter is not common presently, we have included a few such surnames as well:

55.Alexandersson, meaning ' son of Alexander'.

56.Alfredsson, meaning ' son of Alfred'.

57.Andersdotter, meaning 'daughter of' Anders.

58.Bengtsson, meaning ' son of Bengt'. Bengt is the Swedish form of Benedict, which means 'Blessed one' in Latin.

59.Carlsson, meaning ' son of Carl'. The name is associated with Swedish neuropharmacologist, Arvid Carlsson, who was awarded Nobel Prize in Physiology.

60.Davidsson, meaning ' son of David'.

61.Eriksdotter, meaning 'daughter of Erik'.

62.Eriksson, meaning ' son of Erik'. Derived from the Old Norse word Eirikr, meaning ' always with power'.

63.Erlandsson, meaning ' son of Erland'. The surname is associated with Daniel Erlandsson, drummer in the popular band Arch Enemy.

64.Gundersdotter, meaning 'daughter of Gunder'.

65.Gunderson, meaning 'son of Gunder'.

66.Gunnarsson, meaning 'son of Gunnar'.

67.Hakansson, meaning 'son of Hakan'.

68.Hansdotter, meaning 'daughter of Hans'. The name is associated with former Swedish World Cup alpine ski racer and Olympic champion Frida Hansdotter.

69.Hansson, meaning ' son of Hans'.

70.Jacobsson, meaning ' son of Jacob'. Jacob is a variation of the Latin word 'Jacobus', which is derived from the Hebrew word 'Yaakov' meaning ' follower'.

71.Johansdotter, meaning 'daughter of Johans'.

72.Johnson, meaning ' son of John'.

73.Josefsson, meaning ' son of Josef'.

74.Larsdotter, meaning 'daughter of Lars'.

75.Larsson, meaning ' son of Lars'. This last name is associated with Stieg Larsson, a popular Swedish writer.

76.Lennartsson, meaning ' son of Lennart'. Lennart is the Germanic variant of the name, Leonard.

77.Magnusson, meaning ' son of Magnus'.

78.Nilsson, meaning ' son of Nils'.  It is a very common Swedish surname.

79.Petersson, meaning ' son of Peter'.

80.Petersdotter, meaning 'daughter of Peter'.

81.Richardsson, meaning ' son of Richard'.

82.Samuelsson, meaning ' son of Samuel'.

83.Svensson, meaning ' son of Sven'.

84.Svensdotter, meaning 'daughter of Sven'.

Non- Patronymic Swedish Surnames

There are a lot of other surnames in Sweden which do not end with the common -son suffix. Here we give you a list of ten such non- patronymic Swedish surnames:

85.Ahlqvist, meaning 'older twig'.

86.Almgren, meaning ' elm branch'.

87.Bäcklund, an ornamental name composed of 'bäck' meaning 'stream' and 'lund' meaning 'grove'.

88.Blomgren, meaning ' flower branch'.

89.Drakenberg, meaning 'mountain of dragons'.

90.Ehrling, meaning ' heir of Clanchief'. It is a Scandinavian origin name, which means similar to a Prince.

91.Granholm, meaning 'spruce Island'.

92.Gronberg, meaning 'green mountain'.

93.Ljungberg, meaning ' heather mountain'. The Americanized variant of the name is Youngberg.

94.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.

Scandinavian Last Names

Sweden, being a Scandinavian country, has a lot of surnames that are derived from other Scandinavian regions. Here is a list of a few Scandinavian origin last names for you to choose from.

95.Aaberg, meaning ' river of the mountain'. The name is of Swedish origin, composed of 'aa' meaning 'river' and 'berg' meaning 'mountain'.

96.Bielke, a variant'Bjelke'meaning ' beam ' in Norwegenian.

97.Engman, a combination of 'ang' meaning 'meadow' and man. It is a toponymic name for someone who lived around the meadow.

98.Falk, (German Origin)meaning ' falcon' or ' bird of prey'.

99.Nyberg, meaning 'new mountain'.

100.Nyborg, composed of 'ny' meaning 'new' and 'borg' meaning 'castle'. It is a toponymic name for someone living near a new castle or fort.

101.Olander,  a toponymic name for someone living in the islands of Oland or eastern Sweden.

102.Risberg,  meaning 'brushwood mountains'. It is a toponymic name for a person who is from a farmstead.

103.Westberg, meaning ' western hills'. It is a toponymic name referring to someone from the western mountains.

104.Westergaard, (South African Origin, but popular in Scandinavia)anornamental surnamecomposed of 'wester' meaning 'western' and 'gard' meaning 'courtyard'.

Kidadl has lots of great names articles to inspire you. If you liked our suggestions for Swedish Last Names then why not take a look at Haitian Last Names, or for something different take a look at Lovely Long Names.

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Written by Rajnandini Roychoudhury

Bachelor of Arts specializing in English, Master of Arts specializing in English

Rajnandini Roychoudhury picture

Rajnandini RoychoudhuryBachelor of Arts specializing in English, Master of Arts specializing in English

With a Master of Arts in English, Rajnandini has pursued her passion for the arts and has become an experienced content writer. She has worked with companies such as Writer's Zone and has had her writing skills recognized by publications such as The Telegraph. Rajnandini is also trilingual and enjoys various hobbies such as music, movies, travel, philanthropy, writing her blog, and reading classic British literature. 

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