Meaning and Origin of: Kwon

Family name origins & meanings

  • Korean (Kwŏn) : there is only Chinese character for the Kwŏn surname. Some sources list as many as 56 clans, but only two are documented. One of these, the Andong Kwŏn clan, was founded by a Shilla aristocrat named Kim Shin who helped Wang Kŏn, the founder of the Koryŏ kingdom, establish himself as ruler in 918. The new king bestowed upon Kim Shin a new surname: Kwŏn, meaning ‘authority’. The Andong Kwŏn clan has one of the oldest extant printed genealogies in Korea. The Yech’ŏn Kwŏn clan’s original surname was Hŭn. However, the name Hŭn was chosen for the Koryŏ king Myŏngjong’s posthumous name in 1197. To avoid having living people using a king’s posthumous name, the Hŭn family were directed to change their name to Kwŏn. The head of the Hŭn clan at this time became Kwŏn Sŏ, the founding ancestor of the Yech’ŏn Kwŏn clan. Approximately two thirds of all present-day Kwŏn clan members live in the Kyŏngsang provinces.
  • Chinese : variant ofGuan 1.
  • Chinese : variant of Guan2.