Some “Odd” Names from Sweden

According to one Swedish news site, these are the ten “oddest” names in Sweden:

  1. Odd, meaning “point (of a weapon), spear.” Hundreds of men in Sweden are named Odd.
  2. Love, pronounced low-vay, meaning “fame” + “war” (via Lovis, via Louis, via Ludovicus, via Ludwig, etc.). Thousands of men and hundreds of women in Sweden are named Love.
  3. Björn, meaning “bear.” Tens of thousands of men in Sweden are named Björn.
  4. Lillemor, meaning “little mother.” No numbers given, but said to be “a common name in Sweden.” (This one can be traced back to a 19th-century Swedish folk song. Originally it was a pet name.)
  5. Tintin, a pet form of names ending with -tin. Hundreds of men and hundreds of women in Sweden are named Tintin.
  6. Axel, meaning “shoulder.” Tens of thousands of men in Sweden are named Axel.
  7. Stig, meaning “path” or “trail.” Tens of thousands of men in Sweden are named Stig.
  8. Jerker, pronounced yerr-kerr. Thousands of men in Sweden are named Jerker.
  9. Saga, meaning “fairytale.” Thousands of women in Sweden are named Saga.
  10. Ylva, meaning “(female) wolf.” Thousands of women in Sweden are named Ylva.

Ylva is one that I bet Northwestern name-seekers would like. Many of the distinctive baby names used in Oregon and Washington state are nature names, Nordic names, and/or names with uncommon letters; Ylva fits into all three of these categories.

Sources: Ten oddest Swedish names, Nordic Names, Lillemor – Wiktionary


3 thoughts on “Some “Odd” Names from Sweden

  1. But how do you pronounce Ylva? I could see this being a hang-up for a lot of parents. High Scrabble points on this one, though!

    I think Axel will go places. It seems on-trend with ‘Axe’ as a nickname, the ever-popular ‘X’, and the international feel.

    Perhaps parents would consider it more now since Max has become so mainstream.

  2. What makes these names “odd” (apart from Odd)? I don’t quite get it.

    Axel is quite popular here, and possibly headed for the Top 100.

    I love Bjorn, and have considered the English form Beorn.

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