110 Korean Last Names or Surnames

Gyeongbokgung Palace, South Korea

Surnames keep a person connected to the families who came before us. Korean last names offer a great insight into the distinguishing features of a family, their occupations or the places they have lived. Most of the Korean family names are derived from a single syllable, which often depends on the parent’s generation. Throughout North and South Korea, the generation level and surname come before a person’s first name. The most common Korean last names are Kim, Lee, and Park, which collectively make up almost half of the Korean people. Nowadays, the new generation is also looking for uncommon Korean last names, and we have also listed those below.

110 Korean Surnames or Family Names With Meanings

Korea has a population of more than 50 million, and they have some unique and famous Korean last names, too. Here’s a list of 110 Korean family names along with their meanings.

1. Ahn

Ahn means ‘tranquillity’, and it is a commonly used surname in Korea.

2. Bae

Bae means ‘a pear’. It is also spelt as ‘Bai’.

3. Bak

Bak is a popular surname which means ‘gourd’.

4. Baek

This Korean last name refers to the colour white.

5. Bang

This word is derived from a Korean word that means ‘room’.

6. Byun

Byun is taken from the Chinese nickname Bian, which has numerous meaning, such as ‘excitable’ or ‘impatient’. This may also mean ‘edge’ or ‘border’.

7. Cha

Cha is derived from a word which means ‘chariot’.

8. Chai

This surname was derived from China, and it means ‘firewood’.

9. Chang

Chang is another popular Chinese origin word, and it means ‘prosperous’ or ‘flourishing’.

10. Chay

Chay is another variant of the word Chai, and it means ‘brushwood’.

11. Cheong

This surname means ‘gentle or quite’.

12. Chew

This surname was derived from the state of Zhu. Chew was the family name of the emperors during the Ming Dynasty.

13. Chi

Chi is a famous name which refers to a ‘limb’ or ‘a branch’.

14. Chin

Chin surname is derived from the word ‘Chen’ which means ‘ancient’.

15. Cho

Cho was a famous city name of Shanxi province, and it was used as family names.

16. Choi

This surname is a Korean word which means ‘high tower or lofty’.

17. Chong

This surname is an occupational last name that originated from people who were involved in ‘bow-making’.

18. Chu

This comes from the Chinese word ‘Zhu’, which has two different meanings. It is referred to as a toponymic last name, corresponding to the name of the ancient state of Zhu. The name also means ‘vermilion red’.

19. Chun

Chun is a commonly used surname derived from a word which means ‘field’.

20. Do

This word is derived from the word ‘Dao’ that means ‘a path’.

21. Gang

Gang is a Korean family name originating from the Chinese word ‘Jiang’ which means ‘ginger’.

22. Gim

Gim is one of the top surnames derived from China. It means ‘gold’.

23. Goe

Goe is a Korean word which means ‘high’.

24. Ha

Ha is a romanized derivative of ‘Xia’, and it means ‘summer’.

25. Hahm

Hahm is a Korean word for the West, which means ‘weighing scales seller’.

26. Han

Han is a Korean word which means ‘Country or a leader’.

27. Heo

Heo is an uncommon surname. It means ‘advocate’ or ‘to permit’.

28. Ho

Ho is a famous surname which means ‘brave’ or ‘fierce’.

29. Hong

Hong is a China originated word which means ‘great’.

30. Hwang

Hwang has a Chinese origin, and it means ‘Yellow’.

31. Hyun

Hyun is a unique Korean surname which means ‘profound’ or ‘mysterious’.

32. Im

This word has been derived from a Korean word ‘Lin’ which means ‘a forest’.

33. In

In is another unique surname which refers to ‘India’.

34. Jang

Jang means an ‘archer’ or ‘bowyer’.

35. Jee

Jee is derived from the word ‘Zhi’, and it means ‘will’ or ‘ambition’.

36. Jeong

Jeong word is derived from the ancient word ‘Zheng’ which was a state name.

37. Jin

This word is a China originated word which means ‘gold’.

38. Joh

Joh is an uncommon last name derived from an ancient city in Shanxi province.

39. Ju

Ju is a Korean surname which refers to ‘circumference’.

40. Jue

Jue refers to ‘vermilion red’ or ‘cinnabar’.

41. Jun

Jun is a famous surname derived from the Chinese Character, and means ‘talented’ or ‘handsome’.

42. Jung

Jung surname is derived from the name of an ancient state called ‘Zheng’.

43. Kang

Kang surname refers to ‘ginger’.

44. Keng

Keng surname is derived from the word ‘Jiang’, and it means ‘ginger’.

45. Ki

Ki is a short surname derived from China, and it means ‘tree’ or ‘wood’.

46. Kil

Kil surname is derived from a Chinese word that refers to ‘cool’.

47. Kim

Kim is one of the popular surnames in Korea, and it means ‘gold’.

48. Ko

Ko was the family name of Ko dynasty descendants.

49. Kong

This is a Chinese originated word which means ’empty’, ‘hollow’ or ‘sky’.

50. Ku

Ku is a simple surname which means ‘tool’ or ‘utensil’.

51. Kuk

It comes from a Chinese originated word which means ‘Country’.

52. Kwack

Kwack word refers to the ‘outer part of a city or country’.

53. Kwan

Kwan is a Korean variant of word ‘Guan’, and it means ‘border pass’.

54. Kwock

Kwock is another variant of surname Kwack, and refers to ‘a surrounding area’.

55. Kwon

Kwon is a unique surname which is used in Korea. It refers to ‘power’ or ‘authority’.

56. Lee

It comes from a Sino Korean word commonly used by Korean’s. It means ‘plum’.

57. Lin

Lin is a popular Korean last name from China, and it refers to “forest.”

58. Ma

This surname has a Chinese origin, and it means ‘horse’.

59. Min

Min is a famous last name in Korea, and it means ‘smart’ or ‘clever’.

60. Mok

Mok is derived from China, and this surname means ‘screen’ or ‘curtain’.

61. Mong

Mong is another unique Korean surname which means ‘suffer’ or ‘ignorance’.

62. Moon

This is a Chinese derived word which refers to ‘culture’ or ‘literature’.

63. Mun

Mun surname is the other variant of the name Moon. It also means ‘culture’.

64. Myung

Myung refers to ‘brilliant’.

65. Na

Na refers to the state of Zhou dynasty.

66. Nahm

Nahm is another famous Korean surname that refers to ‘south’.

67. No

No is a short surname derived from Chinese word which means ‘field’ or ‘wilderness’.

68. Oh

Oh is used in Korea as a family name as it refers to the ancient state of Wu located in Jiangsu province.

69. Ok

Ok is the spelling variant of words ‘Oak’ or ‘Ock’ that means ‘Oaktree’.

70. Pae

Pae surname refers to ‘a pear’.

71. Paek

Paek is a variant of Baik or Paik, and it refers to white colour.

72. Pai

Pai is another variant of ‘Bai’ or ‘Pei’, and it means ‘pear fruit’.

73. Pak

Pak word is a Sino-Korean word, which means ‘plain’ or ‘unadorned’.

74. Pan

Pan means ‘water in which the rice was rinsed’.

75. Park

Park is another variant of the word ‘Bak’ which means ‘Simple’.

76. Pu

Pu is also a variant of the word ‘Bak’ means ‘Simple’.

77. Quon

Quon is a spelling variant of word ‘Kwon’ which means ‘power’ or ‘authority’.

78. Ra

Ra has been derived from the Chinese word means ‘good’ or ‘virtuous’.

79. Reeh

Reeh refers to ‘plum tree’.

80. Rim

Rim refers to ‘forest’.

81. Roh

This name comes from a Chinese word which means ‘a musical note’.

82. Ryu

Ryu is the Korean word that originated from the Chinese word ‘Yu’, and it means a ‘willow tree’.

83. Sa

Sa surname originated from a family of emperors belonging to Kyongsang South Province’s Kochang County in AD 918-1392.

84. Seo

Seo surname is a Sino-Korean word, and it means ‘calm’ or ‘poised’.

85. Shin

This surname comes from the five Shin Clans who belonged to the Chinese and Korean Peninsular regions.

86. Sim

Sim means ‘sink’.

87. Sin

This last name came into existence from the ancient state in the Xia dynasty.

88. So

So was the family name of traditional emperors of Cholla South province.

89. Son

This name has a Chinese origin, and it means ‘mountain’.

90. Song

Song came into existence from the Song dynasty.

91. Suh

Suh is derived from the variant ‘So’ which was the family name of traditional emperors of Cholla South province.

92. Suk

Suk means ‘ancient’ or ‘stone’.

93. Sun

Sun refers to ‘grandchild’ or ‘descendant’.

94. Sung

Sung is a variant of the name ‘Song’ which cames from the Song dynasty.

95. Tak

Tak surname is the traditional last name of a Scholar from the Koryo Kingdom.

96. Tan

Tan means ‘an exhibit’ or ‘display’.

97. Tang

Tang surname derived from the ruler of the Tang Dynasty.

98. To

To is a Chinese word which means ‘dipper’ or ‘unit of measure’.

99. Toh

Toh is a Chinese word which means ‘stop’ or ‘prevent’.

100. Wang

Wang means ‘king’ or ‘monarch’.

101. Whang

Whang is a variant of word ‘Hwang’. It means ‘yellow’.

102. Woo

Woo is a spelling variant of ‘Wu’, an ancient state located in Jiangsu Province.

103. Yang

Yang means ‘bridge’ or ‘to bridge’.

104. Ye

Ye is a Korean family name with a Chinese origin. It means ‘leaf’.

105. Yee

Yee refers to ‘a plum tree’, and it is a variant of the name ‘Lee’ or ‘Li’.

106. Yeon

Yeon a variant of word ‘Juan’, and it means ‘beautiful’ or ‘graceful’.

107. Yoon

Yoon refers to the ‘eldest’.

108. You

This is a Chinese originated word, which means ‘reason’ or ‘cause’.

109. Yu

This surname comes from a Chinese word that means ‘in’ or ‘at’.

110. Yun

This last name comes from a Sino Korean word which means ‘to govern’ or ‘to oversee’.

Some of the names have an influence of Japanese as well as Chinese names. Apart from these, many surnames are either variations or are related to other surnames.

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