Personal Names

About the work of Greenlandic personal names

Personal names became Language Councils responsibility in august 2016.

‘Guidelines for Naming’ dated November 21st 2006 and ‘Greenlandic personal names’ published in 2015, form the basis of Councils work.

Councils work is based on the existing rules of the Danish Name Law.

‘Greenlandic personal names’ consists of Greenlandic and original European names in Greenlandic form, and can be used in naming and in baptsims.

NOTE: Regarding questions relating to last names, these questions should be forwarded to the High Commissioner of Greenland or the Danish Family Ministry.

Guidelines in naming

  • All names registered in the list can be used in Greenland.
  • Existing rules of orthography should be used. Endings traditionally used on names are approved (-nnguaq etc. for example). Greenlandized personal names of foreign origin can be used.
  • Personal names not listed in the register can only be assigned as names following prior consent. A written application must be submitted 21 days prior to naming to the Language Council.
  • The following can not be expected to be approved:
    • names, which in their character are not personal names,
    • nicknames, which are used as endings to approved names,
    • names, which can be feared to be a burden to the bearer.
  • In regards to names of non-Greenlandic origin, we refer to the principles used in the Danish Name Law. In such cases enquiries should be forwarded to the Family Ministry in Denmark.
  • It is recommended that, according to present practice, a child should not be named with more than five names (hyphenated names are to be considered as two).
  • In the list, a number of names are marked with *; these can be used as both girls or boys names.

Members

  • Mariia Simonsen (Chair)
  • Mette Larsen Lyberth (Vice Chair)
  • Juaaka Lyberth
  • Jens Danielsen
  • Niels-Henrik Lynge