The 100 most beautiful Icelandic names

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Are you looking for a melodious, perhaps somewhat unusual name with meaning? Then an Icelandic first name could be perfect for you. That’s why we’ve put together a list of 100 Icelandic names to inspire you. You’ll find the 20 most popular male and female names as well as other ideas and names with meaning.

Find the matching Icelandic name

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Step 2: Select desired name meanings

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What makes Icelandic names special?

Icelandic names features
What makes Scandinavian baby names special?

Compared to other Scandinavian languages, Icelandic is particularly closely related to Old Norse. As a result, many Icelandic names sound slightly different from the most popular Swedish, Norwegian and Danish names.

In addition, a comparatively large number of special characters have been preserved in the Icelandic language. The accent above the i and u only means that it is pronounced long. Above the a and o, it means that an o is placed after it in pronunciation.

There is also the ð, which is pronounced like the English th. In the German variant, it has become a d over time, which makjes the Germanised variant of Gúðrun Gudrun.

The 20 most popular Icelandic first names

The Icelandic website provides all kinds of statistics about the Nordic country. These include which names were the most common in Iceland. Below you will find the most popular Icelandic first names from 2019.

Top 20 female first names

Here you can find the most common female first names according to statistics from 2019. However, not only birth names were included, which is why this list includes the most popular names of all age groups.

  • Gúðrun – mysterious fighter
  • Anna – the gracious/encouraging one
  • Kristín – Christian woman
  • Sigríður – beautiful victory
  • Margrét – pearl
  • Helga – the saint
  • Sigrún – the victorious
  • Ingibjörg – divine birch
  • María – sea star
  • Jóhanna – the graced/gracious one
  • Elín – the radiant one
  • Katrín – the pure
  • Hildur – the fighter/strong one
  • Eva – life/the life-giving
  • Lilja – lily
  • Ragnheiður – counselling warrior
  • Ásta – beautiful goddess
  • Guðbjörg – fighting birch tree
  • Elísabet – filled with God
  • Erla – the free woman

Top 20 male first names

What applies to the most popular female first names in Iceland applies to male first names as well. That’s why you’ll also find the most common Icelandic male and boy names from 2019 here.

  • Jón – the blessed one
  • Sigurður – victor and protector
  • Guðmundur – protector of the gods
  • Gunnar – the fighter/warrior
  • Olav – descendant/heir of the ancestor
  • Einar – the lone warrior
  • Kristian – the Christian/anointed one
  • Magnús – the great
  • Stefan – the victor/crowned one
  • Jóhann – the graced one
  • Björn – the brown/bear
  • Arnar – warlike eagle
  • Árni – eagle
  • Bjarni – bear
  • Helgi – the saint
  • Halldór – Thor’s rock
  • Pjetur – stone/rock
  • Daníel – “God is my judge”
  • Kristinn – the Christian/anointed one
  • Ragnar – counsellor of the army

Icelandic names for girls

In addition to the most popular names, Iceland has many other names to offer. That’s why we’ve summarised 25 other beautiful Icelandic girls’ names here.

  • Sara – the princess
  • Inga – the protected one
  • Hulda – the gracious
  • Unnur – wave/love
  • Rakel – ewe
  • Thordís – spirit of Thor
  • Jóna – the gracious one
  • Erna – the serious/decisive one
  • Linda – the mild/friendly one
  • Hanna – the gracious/encouraging one
  • Edda – the fighter
  • Telma – the kind
  • Harpa – harp
  • Emelía – the zealous
  • Hafdís – goddess of the sea
  • Jónína – the graced one
  • Brynja – the protective one
  • Helena – the radiant one
  • Kristjana – the anointed one/Christian woman
  • Hjördis – goddess of the sword
  • Sóley – buttercup/island of the sun
  • Arna – eagle
  • Freyja – Norse goddess of love
  • Elsa – the god worshipper
  • Rannveig – housewife/fighter
Icelandic names for girls

Icelandic names for boys

There are many other unusual and melodious names for boys that parents can choose from – here are our 25 favourites:

  • Aron – the enlightened one
  • Svend – young man/warrior
  • Óskar – divine spear
  • Haukur – spirit/mind
  • Áugúst – the exalted
  • Ásegirtli
  • Kjartan – the warrior
  • Baldur – Norse god of light
  • Rúnar – magic/mystery
  • Jónas – dove/bringer of peace
  • Elvar – warlike elf
  • Örn – eagle
  • Ari – eagle
  • Ingvar – warlike god
  • Jakob – the god protected
  • Snorre – the swift one
  • Arnór – eagle/thunderer
  • Emil – the eager one
  • Ingi – Norse primal god
  • Gunnlaugur – rightful warrior
  • Arnar – warlike eagle
  • Theodór – gift of God
  • Fannar – the snow-covered one
  • Gabríel – man/warrior of God
  • Baltasar – “God save his life”

Why do Icelandic names end in -son or -dottir?

Many people wonder why Icelandic surnames always end in -son or -dottir. Yet there are actually no surnames in Icelandic. Instead, they are called patronyms, which means that a -son for son or -dottir for daughter is added to the father’s first name.

However, it is no longer necessarily the father’s name that has to be chosen. If you wish, you can also add -son or -dottir to the mother’ s first name nowadays.

What is interesting about this practice is that Icelanders can often trace their family trees back centuries. Of course, Iceland’s small population and the Book of Land Acquisition (Landnamabók), in which the first settlers were listed, are very helpful as well.

Icelandic names: -son and -dottir
Icelanders use a Patronym or Matronym instead of a surname

Icelandic names with an Old Norse meaning

Many Icelandic names have a meaning that often relates to the history, nature or mythology of the north. We have summarised 10 beautiful representatives for you here.

  • Aegir: mythological figure, giant from the sea
  • Rayk: derived from the Icelandic capital Reykjavík, also means “to smoke” (Reykjavík means something like smoking bay)
  • Njal: another form of Njáll, an Icelandic legendary figure, meaning: the master
  • Snorri: based on Snorri Sturluson, Iceland’s most famous medieval historian, meaning: the swift one
  • Bjarki: little bear

  • Saga: Old West Norse for history, also means “the seer”
  • Herdis: derived from Hjördis (goddess of war)
  • Jorunn: name from Norse mythology, sorceress/mother earth
  • Ulvi: “the she-wolf”
  • Svala-Solvey: a combination of the words for “swallow” and “buttercup”

Bonus: the most beautiful Icelandic horse names

Icelandic names are not only popular for children but also for animals. Icelandic horses in particular are often given a suitable name. There are also particularly popular and meaningful names for them:

Nordic names for mares and stallions

  • Afi – grandfather
  • Alma – young woman/the capable one
  • Baldur – Norse god of light
  • Bera – bear
  • Erlendur – the stranger
  • Finna – Finn
  • Knörr – ship
  • Ríma – the calm one
  • Rögnir
  • Skuld – guilt/future
Icelandic names for horses

Looking for more Nordic names?

Scandinavian is not just Scandinavian. As the sounds of the languages differ to a greater or lesser extent, there are many other Scandinavian names. That’s why you can find more Scandinavian names in our Top 100 Scandinavian names or our article on the most beautiful Swedish names.

Inspiration and tips for your baby’s first outfit

For even more inspiration, you can find popular Scandinavian names, Swedish first names, Norwegian first names or typical Danish first names in our articles. If you’re also looking for Scandinavian baby clothes and baby furniture, you’ll find what you’re looking for here as well.

Here we have put together a short checklist of baby equipment (that is to be found in Scandi style, of course!):

  1. Co-sleeper or cot
  2. Baby mattress
  3. Fitted sheet
  4. Baby blanket
  5. Changing unit
  6. Baby bathtub
  7. Pram
  8. Bodysuits
  9. Rompers
  10. Socks
  11. Bonnet
  12. Sleeping bag
  13. Burp cloths
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