Mongolian Last Names and Meanings
Mongolian surnames have an interesting history as they are more common today than they are in ancient Mongolia. That being said, depending on your ancestry, you may recognize one of the names on this list. This is especially true if you have Mongolian or Mongol elders in your family. Below are a few categories of Mongolian last names as long as some history and traditions.
History of Mongolian Surnames
Mongolians didn’t always use surnames. Even if they had a clan name, it wasn’t typically linked with their name. You can usually tell what part of Mongolian history you are learning about based on some of the names used. For example, Tibetan and Buddhist names were the most common. Since Mongolia had ties with Russia starting in the 20th century, Russian names were common. After the Middle Ages, patronymic surnames were also used.
Mongolia has a list of names that were considered “taboo.” If you chose one of those family names or personal names, it was said to bring evil spirits and misfortune. The same can be said in modern times as well. Some Mongols also skip using names of past rulers, like the infamous Genghis Khan.
Inner Mongolia has a large Chinese population, so there is a mixture of Mongolian and Chinese surnames. there.
Mongolian Naming Practices
From around the 1920s to the 1990s, last names were prohibited in Mongolia. Given names were only used during this time. After that period, surnames came back into the picture to encourage their own identity.
Common Mongolian Surnames
- Batbayar - This is a common last name in Mongolia and it means “strong joy” in Mongolian.
- Bat-Erdene - The meaning of this Mongolian surname is “strong jewel” or “firm jewel.”
- Bolormaa - Not only is this a popular Mongolian surname, but it is a rare female name. It means “crystal woman.”
- Ganbaatar - This common Mongolian last name was often seen used by people who practiced Buddhism. It means “steel hero.”
- Gantulga - This name of Mongol origin means “steel hearth” or “steel cooking stand.”
- Ganzorig - The meaning of the Mongolian name is “steel courage.”
- Lkhagvasuren - This last name is both Mongolian and Russian. It means “great healer.”
- Monkhbat - This family name of Mongol origin means “eternal firmness” or “eternal strength.”
- Nergui - This Mongolian name was given to lead off bad spirits. It means “no name.”
- Otgonbayar - This name is another very popular last name in Mongolia. It means “youngest joy.”
- Oyuunchimeg - In Mongolian, this surname means “decoration consisting of a notable mind.”
Ancient Mongolian Surnames
- Altanbaatariin - This ancient Mongolian name means “golden” or “red dawn.”
- Buyantu - This name of Mongol origin means “blessed.” The 8th Great Khan of the Mongol Empire was Buyantu Khan.
- Gegeen - The meaning of this Mongolian surname is “enlightened” or “bright.”
- Genghis - This name of Mongol origin means “universal ruler.” Genghis Khan was the founder of the Mongol Empire.
- Jochi - This name means “guest” in Mongol and is also the name of the son of Genghis Khan.
- Kucugur - This last name of Mongol origin means “fieldmouse.”
- Mongke - In Mongolian, this surname means “everlasting” or “eternal.”
- Qongqor - In Middle Mongolian, this name means the horse color ”chestnut.”
- Ragibagh - This name of Mongol origin is shared by the 11th Great Khan of the Mongol Empire.
- Ulgen - This last name means “magnificent” in Mongol and Turkish. Ulgen is a deity who created the earth and all living things.
- Yesun - Also the 10th Khan of the Mongol Empire, this name means “abundance” in Mongolian.
More Mongolian Surnames
- Altantsetseg - This surname of Mongolian origin means “golden flower.”
- Baatar - This last name is derived from the Mongolian word for “hero.”
- Borjigin - This is a clan name The “Borjigids” provided rule to Mongolia until the 20th century.
- Enebish - This is a Russian surname that is found often in Mongolia. It means “not this one.”
- Erdenechimeg - The meaning of this Mongolian last name is “jewel ornament.”
- Gansukh - This Mongolian name means “steel ax.”
- Jargal - The meaning of this name of Mongolian origin is “happiness.”
- Temujin - This is the given name of Genghis Khan. It means “of iron” or “blacksmith” in Mongolian.
- Tungalag - This name means “crystal clear” in Russian and Mongolian.
- Tomorbaatar - This surname is derived from a male given name. It means “iron hero” or “iron warrior.”