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German Last Names

German Last Names

This article will not only provide you with an alphabetical list of the common German last names but will also give you more information about the same. Read on and find out more about the German surnames.
Entertainism Staff
There are some people in Germany whose last names are more popular than their first names. Some of the most common last names that are unforgettable are Graf, Einstein, Becker, Kahn, Klose, Ballack, Bach, and so on. In Germany, last names, or surnames are usually referred to as Nachname, and each of them have been derived either from the person's profession, or on the basis of the person's physical characteristics. Here are a few interesting facts about German surnames.

✦ Usually after marriage, the wife drops her maiden name and uses her husband's name. However after 1990, a law was passed which stated that the couple, or rather the wife could keep her maiden name instead of her husband's name.

✦ If one of the partners in a German couple decides to keep both the husband's as well as the wife's name, they can use both separated by a hyphen. There can be a double name or a Doppelname. However, only one person can have the double name.

✦ Children of parents carrying Doppelname  can use either their father's last name (most common practice), or their mother's maiden name but not the double name.

✦ The couple could also have one name as their marriage name or Ehename. However, they could either use the last name of the husband, or the wife.
List of German Last Names
A
Abbe Abbing Abendroth Achenbach
Ackermann Adelberg Adenauer Adlersflugel
Adolf Aegerter Aeschelman Aicher
Allendorf Amsel Angerhofer Ankenbauer
Angerhofer Appelman Arlinghaus Aschenbach
Aue Aufderheide Aulenbach Aurich
Austerlitz Autenrieth Awe Aydt
B
Baader Babel Bachhuber Baden
Balmer Bandi Banke Barbian
Barfknecht Bechtel Beckenbauer Becker
Beckert Beckstead Beha Benzschawel
Berlin Bieber Biedenbach Birnbaum
Bischoff Bitterman Bitz Blickensderfer
Blosch Blumenthal Bolten Bosch
Brauer Brose Brueggemann Buchsbaum
Buchholz Bumgarner Burgstaller Buxbaum
C
Campen Candler Canther Cantor
Carlson Carver Casper Castor
Chemnitz Chevrolet Christ Christen
Christiansen Christlieb Christof Christoffer
Clausnitzer Claussen Clemen Clement
Cloar Colbeck Colditz Coontz
Cornelius Cregar Cruse Cuda
D
Dade Dach Daecher Daneker
Daniels Danke Danz Daubenspeck
Daum Daunhauer Denfeld Dengler
Dickerhoff Ditz Dirchs Dobeck
Dotzler Drager Draxler Dresbach
Dreschler Dressel Dresser Dressler
Dressman Drews Drexel Dunkle
Durian Durre Durrenberger Dwenger
E
Ebel Ebersbacher Eberstark Eble
Ebner Eckermann Eckrich Eden
Egerer Egner Egolf Ehrenberg
Ehrlichmann Eichacker Eichbaum Eichfel
Eidam Eiffel Eischeid Eisele
Eisenhauer Ellenbogen Elting Engeldinger
Enis Ennen Enns Eppers
Erbach Essenmacher Eyring Eyster
F
Faas Faatz Fabel Fabricius
Faix Falk Falke Falkenrath
Fall Faller Fasching Fassbinder
Fath Fatzinger Fechner Fehrmann
Feierabend Feil Feiler Felkner
Fell Ferdinand Ferg Fernbach
Fernholz Finzel Fisch Fischbach
Fischbeck Fizer Flach Flache
Fraedrich Fraenkel Frey Freyberg
Freye Fussner Futter Fux
G
Gabel Gabriel Ganger Garn
Garells Gerecke Gerhard German
Gerste Gerstner Gerwin Goethe
Goetze Gradel Gragert Grahle
Graser Graver Greil Greimann
Grelle Gutwein Gutz Gwinner
H
Haagen Harmacher Hagedorn Hagel
Haken Hals Hamiter Hanning
Hanno Hardenberg Harr Hase
Haselhorst Hasser Haube Haulman
Hebrank Helf Helferich Helwig
Herl Hermsen Hort Huxhold
I
Ibacher Ibe Ickes Ickert
Ida Ihde Ikard Ilgen
Illian Ilse Imboden Imhof
Imlauer Immekus Indorf Isaak
Isch Isenbart Itter Ivers
J
Jabs Jach Jachenholz Jack
Jacobitz Jacoby Jaeger Jagow
Jahnke Janick Jank Janning
Jeck Jeschke Jons Joppe
Jopp Jude Judith Juedes
Juergens Jungfer Junghans Juniel
Jurris Jurrens Jurs Jutta
K
Kaas Kabel Kafer Kaffenberger
Kagel Kahn Kallenbach Kampf
Kappenman Karow Karp Kater
Kasinger Kassel Karsten Katz
Katzenberger Kempen Kercher Kertz
Kessinger Kestenbaum Ketterman Klempner
Kliethermes Klos Klosa Kosten
Krapp Krausman Kreitler Kremer
Krienke Kruck Kruger Krumm
Krutsch Kuhn Kunze Kunzelman
L
Laden Lader Lahr Lambrecht
Lamke Lampke Landauer Landefeld
Landenberger Lander Landis Landmann
Landt Landwehr Laner Lange
Langhans Langrehr Langs Langsam
Langsdorf Lassen Lather Laucks
Laude Laue Lauerman Lausch
Lauterbach Lauterer Lauth Lecker
Lederer Ledig Lehde Lehenbauer
Leuprecht Lewark Lutz Luy
M
Mackert Magstadt Maier Maike
Maikranz Mainz Manke Mann
Manske Mantei Mayers Mehringer
Meier Meili Menninger Mittleider
Mosner Muckerheide Muckle Muecke
Muggli Mundt Murman Mutz
N
Naatz Nachtwey Nau Neitzke
Nell Neudorf Neumeyer Nickelsen
Nieland Nielsen Niemann Nienhaus
Nienow Nienstedt Nigg Ninnemann
Nippert Nowak Noyer Nussbaum
O
Obenauf Ober Obermayer Ochs
Oechsle Oechsner Oetzel Offenbacher
Ohler Oltz Osterhagen Ostermeyer
Ostheimer Ottenbacher Oxner Ozanne
P
Page Pagenkopf Penders Penning
Penninger Pester Pfautz Pillman
Plambeck Plien Plumhoff Pohlmann
Poje Polka Poll Polzin
Pomerantz Pottratz Prahst Pratz
Prehn Propson Propst Prust
Puett Purucker Pusch Puschmann
Q
Quass Quakenbush Qualman Quest
Quick Quickel Quiram Quiring
R
Rader Rasmussen Rater Ratermann
Rath Recktenwald Reicheln Reider
Reidinger Reinmann Reisner Remlinger
Rentschler Rentz Renz Retterath
Retterer Ricks Ridder Ridlehoover
Ringhofer Rosenbeck Roser Roth
Rottler Rottmann Rottner Rout
Ruecker Ruegsegger Ruehl Rueter
Rueth Rudolph Rybak Ryser
S
Sager Salz Salzwedel Sankt
Sauter Saxe Schierman Schiffer
Schiffhauer Schindler Schnarr Schneekloth
Schneekman Schnell Schoeneman Schuld
Schwartzenberger Schwartz Seckel Sedler
See Shuster Sorglos Stade
Star Starck Stefan Steinbrecher
Steindorf Steiner Strange Strathman
Straub Strauss Strey Strick
Strobel Struve Studer Sukup
T
Taschner Tautges Tax Tendick
Tendler Teschendorf Teske Tessler
Textor Thalacker Thalberg Thalheimer
Thering Thomsen Thummel Tikalsky
Timmermann Timmreck Toensing Tomasek
Topel Topf Topfer Topol
Topp Traugott Treiber Treible
Treichel Treichler Trommler Tromp
Trosky Trump Trumpy Trunk
Tschannen Tubbesing Tuch Tuchman
U
Ubben Ubel Ubelhor Uhr
Ulbrich Ullrich Umbach Umland
Unkel Unland Unzicker Uphoff
Urich Urner Urschel Usner
Usselman Utech Utecht Utesch
Uthoff Utke Utsler Utzinger
V
Vahl Vahle Vanderbilt Veil
Veitenheimer Veith Velte Venter
Vesper Vetsch Victor Viehmann
Viehweg Viel Voltez Volez
Vogelsang Vogle Vogler Vogt
Volle Vollenweider Voller Vollman
Volz Vonada Von Allmen Von Behren
Von Gunten Von Grimmelshausen Vonnegut Von Tonder
Von Wegberg Voos Voran Vorpahl
Vorst Vosberg Voss Vossen
W
Waack Waber Wahner Waldemar
Wald Walek Waldfogel Walkes
Walkowiak Wall Wallerstein Wartenberg
Webel Wedemeyer Weirich Weisbecker
Weise Weiss Weith Weitkamp
Welde Wendell Wenke Werkheiser
Wessinger Wetterman Winkelbauer Wolter
Womelsdorf Worl Worm Wriedt
Wulfekuhle Wullschleger Wurfel Wurster
Wuthrich Wutzke Wyman Wyss
X
Xander Xanders Xylander
Y
Yacklel Yahnel Young Yuengling
Z
Zabel Zabat Zacha Zahn
Zapf Zeck Zeilinger Zellweger
Zemp Nielsen Zempel Ziegenbein
Zigler Zimpfer Zinsmeister Zogg
Zoll Zollars Zurfluh Zwieg
Common German Last Names and Meanings
Bauer ~ Farmer Klein ~ Small
Becker ~ Baker Schneider ~ Tailor
Fischer ~ Fisher Schroeder ~ Carter
Schwarz ~ Black Kreuger ~ Potter
Braun ~ Brown Koenig ~ King
Fuchs ~ Fox Weiss ~ White
Jung ~ Young Kauffmann ~ Businessman
Keller ~ Cellar Bach ~ Brook
Hahn ~ Hen or Rooster Lehmann ~ Serf
Mayer/Meier ~ Dairyman Hoffmann ~ Landed Farmer
Webber ~ Weaver Engel ~ Angel
Eichmann ~ Oak man Meller ~ Miller
Nadel ~ Needle Reinhardt ~ Determined
Richter ~ Judge Schiffer ~ Boatman
Schmitt/Schmidt ~ Smith Schreiber ~ Writer
Schuhmacher ~ Shoe maker Strauss ~ Bouquet
Unger ~ Hungarian Vogel ~ Bird
Wagner ~ Wagoner Koehler ~ Charcoal maker
Herrmann ~ Warrior Lange ~ Long
Zimmermann ~ Carpenter Roth ~ Red
Rothschild ~ Red shield Ritter ~ Knight
Pfeifer ~ Pepper Ostermann ~ Eastern man
Neumann ~ New man Nacht ~ Night
Kirsch ~ Cherry Hirsch ~ Deer
Freud ~ Joy or happy Brandt ~ Fire
Classification of Names
German surnames were derived from four main sources, and each of these are described as below.
Geographical Locations
As the name suggests, some people were named on the basis of the place they came from; Peter von Berlin stands for Peter who came from Berlin, while Ralph Frankfurter stands for Ralph who was from Frankfurt.
Physical Features
Some people were also given surnames on the basis of their physical features, like 'short', 'tall', 'fat', or 'small'. For example, a person with brown hair was usually referred to as 'Braun', while a person who was short was referred to as 'Klein'.
Profession
Last names were also given on the basis of the profession of the person. If a person was a baker by profession, then he was given the surname Becker, and if the person was a tailor, then Schneider was the surname given.
First Name of Parents
Although giving surnames on the basis of this category was not common in Germany as in other parts of Europe, some people were referred to on the basis of their father's or mother's name.
Apart from these, some other German surnames include Walter, which means ruler or leader in the army, Kohl implies cabbage seller or grower, and Hartmann stands for a strong or courageous man.