Common German Last Names – Do you recognize any?
German last names are an interesting bunch purely based on how they came about. Almost all German surnames are based on an occupation, a trait or a place. This leads to some pretty self-explanatory surnames. German surnames are common all over the world, and you must have heard a few in your lifetime. There are several famous and notable figures that bear German surnames, from celebrities to political figures. You can explore the various names and their meanings in this article.
For your ease, we have broken down popular German last names according to 3 categories; occupation, traits and region. Have fun checking them out!
Common German Last Names Based On Occupation
Listed below are common and popular German last names with meanings, that are given according to the occupation of the name holder. Even without the definition listed, I’m pretty sure you can guess what they mean.
Müller – Miller
Schmidt/Schmitt – Smith
Meyer/Meier/Mayer – Self-employed Farmer
Schneider – Tailor
Fischer – Fisherman
Weber – Weaver
Wagner – Wainwright
Becker/Beck – Baker
Schulz/Scholz – Medieval Sheriff
Hoffmann – Steward or courtier
Schäfer – Shepherd
Koch – Cook
Bauer/Baumann – Farmer
Richter – Judge
Zimmermann – Carpenter
Schröder – Tailor or Wine shipper
Hofmann – Steward
Krüger – Innkeeper
Lehmann – Vassal
Schulze/Schulte – Medieval mayor
Köhler – Charcoal-maker
Huber – Farmer
Möller – Miller
Krüger – Potter
Keller – Winemaker
Winkler – Grocer
Schuster/Schumacher – Shoemaker
Krämer – Grocer
Vogt – Bailiff
Jäger – Hunter
Bergmann – Miner
Pfeiffer – Piper
Schreiber – Scrivener
Graf – Count
Ziegler – Brickmaker
Popular German Surnames By Trait or Characteristic
Again, this list of German surnames are pretty self-explanatory as they describe a feature or trait of an individual.
Klein – Small/short
Wolf – Wolf-like
Neumann – New Man
Schwarz – Black haired
Braun – Brown haired
Lange/Lang – Tall
Krause – Curly Haired
König – King
Kaiser – Emperor
Fuchs – Fox-like
Weiß – White Haired
Jung – Young
Roth – Red haired
Kraus – Curly-haired
Groß – Big
Kühn – Brave
Sauer – Grim
Hartmann – Strongman
German Last Names By Place/Region
This list shows German names that indicate where a person lives or has come from.
Achterberg – From the name of various places in the Netherlands and Germany.
Acker – A person who lives near a field.
Adenauer – Someone from Adenau in Germany.
Bergmann – Someone who lived on a mountain.
Bohler – Someone from the German towns called Boll or Böhl.
Bohm – Somebody from the region of Bohemia.
Braband – Region of Brabant.
Breisacher – Someone from the town of Breisach, Germany.
Frank – Name for a person from Franconia in Germany.
Graner – A person from Gran, a city in northern Hungary.
Heppenheimer – From the city of Heppenheim in Hesse, Germany.
Holst – Someone from Holstein, between Germany and Denmark.
Meissener – German town of Meissen.
Oursler – A person from Ursel/Oberursel in Hesse, Germany.
Sachs – A person from Saxony.
Tangeman – Someone from Tange in northern Germany.
West – Someone from the west or who came from the West.
Zellweger – A person from the Appenzell region of Switzerland.
We hope you enjoyed reading through this article. You can read more of our worldlastnames.com articles by clicking on the link in red.
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