Germanic Names in the Eldest Runic Inscriptions

Male Names

Ancient germanic warriorAdo – Gammertingen (Baden-Württemberg, Germany), ivory box.
Adujislu – Westeremden A (Groningen, Netherlands), weaving-slay of yew-wood. Meaning: ādu- < *auda, ‘wealth’ and -jīslu < *gīsalaz, ‘hostage’ or ‘offspring’.
Aebi – Schwangau (Bayern, Germany), gilt-silver buckle.
Æko – Chessel Down II (Isle of Wight), silver plate.
Æniwulufu – Folkestone (Kent, England), gold tremissis. Meaning: the first element is obscure; -wulufu < *wulfaz, ‘wolf’.
Aib – Oostum (Groningen, Netherlands), antler comb.
Aigil – Pforzen (Bayern, Germany), silver belt buckle. Meaning: connection either with Gmc. *agjō, ‘sword, edge’, or Goth. agis, ‘scare, fear’.
Akaz – Åsum-C (Skåne, Sweden), bracteate. Meaning: ‘driver’.
Arogisl – Schretzheim I (Bayrisch Schwaben, Germany), silver amulet box. Meaning: aro-, ‘eagle’.
Arwi – Heibronn-Böckingen (Baden-Württemberg, Germany), silver belt-trimmings. Meaning: < *arwa, ‘ready for harvesting, ripe’.
Awimund – Weimar III (Thüringen, Germany), bronze belt buckle.
Bekka – Chessel Down I (Isle of Wight), bronze pail.
Bera – Kragehul II (Funen, Denmark), bone knifeshaft. Meaning: ‘bear’.
Bidawarijaz – Nøvling (Jutland, Denmark), silver fibula. Meaning: bīda-, ‘to long for’ and -warijaz, ‘protector’.
Boso – Freilaubersheim (Rheinhessen, Germany), gilt-silver bow-fibula.
Dado – Weingarten II (Baden-Württemberg, Germany), gilt-silver fibula.
Danilo – Balingen (Baden-Württemberg, Germany), golden brooch.
Daþa – Soest (Westfalen, Germany), golden brooch.
Eda – Amay (Liège, Belgium), bone comb. Meaning: OFris. ēda < *aid- < *haiđ- < *haiþi, ‘clear’.
Epa – Kent III, IV (England), silver sceattas. Meaning: based on Celtic epo, ‘horse’.
Gabar – Schretzheim III (Bayrisch Schwaben, Germany), iron ring-sword. Meaning: < *Gabahari, gaba-, ‘gift’ and -hari or -heri < Gmc. *harjaz, ‘warrior’.
Habuku – Oostum (Groningen, Netherlands), antler comb. Meaning: <*habukaz, ‘hawk’.
Hada – Harlingen (Friesland), gold solidus. Meaning: < *haþu-, ‘battle’ or *hađaz, ‘restraint, confinement’.
Hæriboki – Watchfield (Oxfordshire, England), copper-alloy fittings. Meaning: hæri- < Gmc. *harja-, ‘army’; -bōki, ‘beech’.
Hagiradaz – Garbølle (Stenmagle, Sealand), yew-wooden box. Meaning: hagi-, ‘suitable’ and -rāđaz, ‘adviser’.
Hahwar – Weimar III (Thüringen, Germany), bronze belt buckle. Meaning: hah-, ‘hedge, fence’ and -war(i) cf. OHG werian, ‘to resist, to defence’.
Hamal – Neudingen-Barr II (Baden-Württemberg, Germany), wooden stave. Meaning: the name-element ham- may point to a soldier in arms.
Hariso – Himlingøje II (Sealand), silver bow-fibula.
Hariuha – Raum Køge-C and Seeland (II)-C (Sealand), bracteate. Meaning: hari-, ‘battle’ and –uha, which probably stands for unga, ‘young’.
Harkilaz – Nydam II (Jutland), bronze strap end. Meaning: possible connection with ON harkr, ‘uproar, tumult’.
Haleþewaz – Bergakker (Gelderland), gilt-silver scabbard mount. Meaning: hāle- < Gmc. *hail, ‘whole, safe’ and -þewaz, ‘thane, warrior’.
Hlewagastiz – Gallehus (Jutland), two gold horns. Meaning: hlewa- < *hlewa, ‘lee, protection’ and -gastiz, ‘guest’.
Kolo – Griesheim (Hessen, Germany), silver bow-fibula. Meaning: possible connection with ON kollir, ‘helmet’.
Laguþewa – Illerup III (Jutland), silver mount for a shield-handle. Meaning: lagu-, ‘sea, water’; þewa < * þegwaz, ‘servant’.
Lamo – Undby (Sealand), silver fibula. Meaning: ‘lame one’.
Leþro – Strårup (Jutland), golden diadem or neckring. Meaning: ‘leathery one’.
Leubo – Schretzheim II (Bayrisch Schwaben, Germany), silver disc-brooch. Meaning: ‘love’.
Liano – Charnay (Burgundy, France), silver bow-fibula.
Ludda – Harford Farm (Caistor-by-Norwich, Norfolk), brooch. Meaning: lud-, cf. OE lēod, ‘prince, man’.
Muha – Kragehul I (Funen), wooden spear-shaft. Meaning: cf. (ga)mūha, ‘retainer’.
Niþijo – Illerup II (Jutland), silver mount for a shield-handle. Meaning: niþ- may be connected with Goth. niþjis, ‘relative’.
Noru – Aalen (Baden-Württemberg, Germany), silver neckring.
Oka – Rasquert (Groningen), whalebone swordhandle. Meaning: cf. OE oca, ‘mind, intelligence’.
Pada – Kent II, coinage.
Rasuwamund – Arlon (Luxembourg, Belgium), silver bulla. Meaning: rasuwa- cf. OE ræswa, ‘leader, ruler’ and -mund < Gmc. *mundō, ‘protection, security’.
Sawilagaz – Lindholm (Skåne), bonepiece. Meaining: ‘sunny one’.
Segalo – München-Aubing I (Bayern, Germany), gilt-silver fibula. Meaning: related to Latin sigillum.
Sekka – Chessel Down I (Isle of Wight), bronze pail.
Sigibald – Weimar II (Thüringen, Germany), gilt-silver bow-fibula. Meaning: sigi-, ‘victory’ and -bald, ‘bold, quick’.
Sigimer – Ash Gilton (Kent), gilt-silver sword pommel. Mening: sigi-, ‘victory’ and mēr < Gmc. mēriz, ‘famous’.
Sïþæbald – Loveden Hill (Lincolnshire), cremation urn. Meaning: sïþæ- cf. OE (ge)sīd, ‘companion’ and -bald, ‘bold, quick’.
Skanomodu – gold solidus.
Swarta – Illerup I (Jutland), bronze mount for a shield-handle. Meaning: < Gmc. *swartaz, ‘black one’.
Tæpa – Kent III, sceattas.
Tuda – Bernsterburen (Friesland), whalebone staff. Meaning: < Gmc. *þeuđ-, ‘people’.
Ura – Ferewerd (Friesland), antler combcase.
Wagagastiz – Nydam I (Jutland), wooden axe-handle. Meaning: wāga- may be connected with ON vágr, ‘wave’; -gastiz means ‘guest’.
Wagnijo – Illerup IV (Jutland), iron lancehead. Meaning: possible connection with ON vagn, ‘waggon’.
Wekka – Chessel Down I (Isle of Wight), bronze pail.
Welandu – Schweindorf (Ostfriesland, Germany), gold solidus. Meaning: < Gmc. *wēla-handuz, ‘trickster’, cf. OE Wēland, ON Völundr.
Widuhundaz – Himlingøje I (Sealand), silver fibula. Meaning: widu-, ‘wood’ and -hundaz, ‘hound’.
Witro – Slemminge (Lolland), reindeer antler hide-scraper. Mening: ‘wise one’.
Wiwogan – Eichstetten (Baden-Württemberg, Germany), silver mouthpiece of a spatha. Meaning: connection with OHG wīgan, ‘to fight’.
Wolþuþewaz – Thorsberg (Schleswig-Holstein, Germany), bronze sword-chape. Meaning: cf. Goth. wulþus, ‘exuberance, sumptuousness’; -þewaz, ‘thane, warrior’.

Female Names

Aergunþ – Weimar IV (Baden-Württemberg, Germany), amber pearl.
Agilaþruþ – Griesheim (Hessen, Germany), silver bow-fibula. Meaning: agila- may be connected with Goth. agis, ‘scare, fear’; -þruþ: cf. OHG thrūt, drūd, ‘force, fierce’, ON þrúðr, ‘force, woman, daughter of Thor’.
Aïlrun – Pforzen (Bayern, Germany), silver belt buckle. Possible connection with ON Ölrun < *Alrūna, swan-maiden from Völundr story.
Alagunþ – Schretzheim I (Bayrisch Schwaben, Germany), silver amulet box. Meaning: ala-, ‘all’ and -gunþ, ‘battle’.
Arsiboda – Bezenye II (Komitat Mosony, Hungary), silver bow-fibula.
Awa – Nordendorf I (Bayern, Germany), gilt-silver bow-fibula. Meaning: connection with the magic word auja.
Awijabirg – Oettingen (Bayern, Germany), silver disc-brooch. Meaning: awija- cf. Awa; -birg, ‘protection’.
Bada – Kirchheim Teck (Baden-Württemberg, Germany), gilt-silver bow-fibula.
Birgina – Weimar III (Thüringen, Germany), bronze belt buckle. Meaning: birg-, ‘protection’ and the female suffix *-injō-.
Bliþgunþ – Neudingen-Barr II (Baden-Württemberg, Germany), wooden stave. Meaning: bliđi-, ‘glad’ and -gunþ, ‘battle’.
Buriso – Beuchte (Niedersachsen, Germany), gilt-silver bow-fibula.
Eho – Donzdorf (Baden-Württemberg, Germany), silver bow-fibula.
Feha – Weingarten I (Baden-Württemberg, Germany), gilt-silver fibula. Meaning: possible connection with OHG faginōn, ‘to enjoy oneself’.
Fiaginþ – Eichstetten (Baden-Württemberg, Germany), silver mouthpiece of a spatha.
Goda – Arlon (Luxembourg, Belgium), silver bulla.
Godahild – Bezenye I (Komitat Mosony, Hungary), silver bow-fibula.
Haribrig – Weimar I (Thüringen, Germany), gilt-silver bow-fibula. Meaning: hari-, ‘army’ and -brig = -birg, ‘protection’.
Hiba – Weimar II (Thüringen, Germany), gilt-silver bow-fibula.
Idda – Weimar III (Thüringen, Germany), bronze belt buckle. Charnay (Burgundy, France), silver bow-fibula.
Iduni – Weimar III (Thüringen, Germany), bronze belt buckle. Charnay (Burgundy, France), silver bow-fibula.
Imuba – Neudingen-Barr II (Baden-Württemberg, Germany), wooden stave.
Jisuhild – Westeremden A (Groningen), weaving-slay of yew-wood. meaning: -hild, ‘battle’.
Leuba – Schretzheim I (Bayrisch Schwaben, Germany), silver bulla. Meaning: ‘love’.
Þuruþhild – Friedberg (Hessen, Germany), silver disc-brooch. Meaning: -þuruþ = -þruþ: cf. OHG thrūt, drūd, ‘force, fierce’, ON þrúðr, ‘force, woman, daughter of Thor’; -hild, ‘battle’.
Winka – Dischingen I (Baden-Württemberg, Germany), silver bow-fibula. Meaning: wīg < Gmc. * wīg-, OHG wīg, wīc, ‘battle’, with diminutive ending -ka.

8 comments… add one
  • Eva Ries

    Greetings!

    Very happy to have found this website, well-researched and factual information on Norse cultures, language and traditions is often difficult to find. Even better is insightful people still living in Nordic regions who have an understanding of how today’s culture was influenced by past generations and ancient ancestors.

    I’ve been trying to find more about Norse naming rites/rituals. So far, most of what I’ve found is for infants and young children to be privately and publicly named by their parents and relatives, and then presented to the larger tribal community. Most of what I found is very basic and vague, mostly from articles by scholars finding physical artifacts and linking the artifacts to the custom associated with the item, for example.

    My first name is actually Irene-Eva, and I do not particularly like it for several reasons. mostly because it’s from a culture and belief system of which I am not part, and I don’t like the idea of having a name from some other place and people imposed on me. And, it poorly suits me.

    Have you any information or insight into a “naming” rite or ritual for a young person or adult? The idea here is to (at least symbolically) shed the unwanted name and take on a more suitable one. Do you know if any of the Nordic cultures had such a thing, or if they perhaps had an initiation rite to take someone into a tribe which could be adapted to be a “renaming” ritual?

    Anything would help – thank you in advance!

    • Viking Rune

      Hello. I am not aware of such a ritual in the Norse culture.

  • Alexander

    Hello there.
    Firstly, impressive website, lots of info and simple enough to follow along and learn new things about Viking culture.
    Second, I’m researching my name in various cultures. I know my name is traditionally derived from the Greek Alexandros, however I’ve been curious about how variations of the name appears in other cultures. Considering my German/Austrian heritage I thought I’d look into where the name appears in history in those particular countries, which is pretty much exactly the same as it is now. But I started thinking, what if some form of ‘Alexander’ was used in the Viking Age by the Vikings, maybe around time where their conquests took them into Germany. I am curious if some form of Aleksandr or Alengsandr would have made a debut during this era. Thoughts?
    Thirdly, I am looking into getting my name tattooed in Viking Runes. I’ve used your converter and converted Alex and Alexander into Elder Futhark, Younger Futhark and Anglo-Saxon Runes. Given the many variations Alexander can have in Younger Futhark [Al(e,i,j,y)(x,ngs)an(d,t)(e,i,j,y)r as per the table in your How to Write a Name in Runes for a Tattoo page], would it be better to use Elder Futhark? Or is there a way to present the runes in Younger Futhark that makes the runes more phonetically accurate?

    Thanks for reading

    • Viking Rune

      I did not meet any mentions of the name Alexander as used by the Scandinavians in the Viking Age. Any runic alphabet would be great to represent your name. The choice is certainly up to you.

  • Eirik

    How could you forget Eirik, as in Eirik the Red, father of Leif?

    • Viking Rune

      Hello. Eirik is a Viking Age name, while this article is about names in early runic inscriptions.

  • Randy

    Great site, refer to it often.

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