Icelandic Girl Names: A Comprehensive Guide

Linguistically speaking, there are two groups of Icelandic girl names.

Names borrowed from other languages and adapted to Icelandic spelling form the first group. Examples include names like Kristín, Elín, and Lilja.

Names derived from Old Norse, the ancient language of the Vikings from which Icelandic evolved, constitute the 2nd group —which includes Guðrún, Sigríður, Sigrún, and Bryndís.

Icelandic and Old Norse are Germanic languages. Germanic names are often dithematic, which means that they are formed by combining two elements. So, while names in the first category usually have a single root, those in the second category often combine two roots.

The name Bryndís, for example, is formed by combining the root “bryn-” (meaning “armored”) with the root “-dís” (meaning “goddess” or “fairy”).

Icelandic girl names that contain the root “ást” (meaning “love”)

The Icelandic word for “love” is “ást”. This word is the root of the Icelandic name Ásta; this word is also paired with additional elements to create Icelandic dithematic names with complex meanings. Examples of these include Ástheiður, Ástdís, Ástrós, and Ástrún.

Name Root Components Possible Meaning of the Name
Ásta Ást (love) Love
Ástheiður Ást (love) + Heiður (honor) Love and honor
Ástdís Ást (love) + Dís (goddess) Love goddess
Ástrós Ást (love) + Rós (rose) Love rose
Ástrún Ást (love) + Rún (rune) Love rune

Icelandic girl names that contain the root “fríður” (meaning “beautiful”)

Icelandic girl names can be beautiful, and they can even contain the Icelandic word for “beautiful” —which is “fríður”.

On its own, the Icelandic word “fríður”, becomes a female name when capitalized as Fríður. The word is paired with a second component in the following Icelandic dithematic names:

Name Root Components Possible Meaning of the Name
Hólmfríður Hólm (islet) + Fríður (beautiful, fair) Beautiful islet
Arnfríður Arn (eagle) + Fríður (beautiful, fair) Beautiful eagle
Snæfríður Snær (snow) + Fríður (beautiful, fair) Beautiful snow
Sigfríður Sigr (victory) + Fríður (beautiful, fair) Beautiful victory

Icelandic female names that contain the root “dís” meaning “goddess”

In Icelandic (and in Old Norse), the word “dís” means “goddess” or “fairy”. The lovely meaning of this word makes it very well suited to be a component of Icelandic dithematic girl names. No wonder it’s one of the most common components in the formation of these names.

Name Root Components Possible Meaning of the Name
Bryndís Bryn (armor) + Dís (goddess) Armored goddess
Ásdís Ás (god) + Dís (goddess) Goddess of the gods
Hafdís Haf (ocean) + Dís (goddess) Goddess of the ocean
Vigdís Víg (war) + Dís (goddess) Warrior goddess
Sædís Sæ (sea) + Dís (goddess) Goddess of the sea
Svandís Svan (swan) + Dís (goddess) Swan goddess
Arndís Arn (eagle) + Dís (goddess) Eagle goddess
Aldís Ald (wave) + Dís (goddess) Wave goddess
Eydís Ey (island) + Dís (goddess) Island goddess
Valdís Val (the dead, the slain) + Dís (goddess) Goddess of the slain
Bergdís Berg (mountain) + Dís (goddess) Mountain goddess
Sóldís Sól (sun) + Dís (goddess) Sun goddess
Hrafndís Hrafn (raven) + Dís (goddess) Raven goddess
Ástdís Ást (love) + Dís (goddess) Goddess of love

Names with the root word “heiður” (meaning “honor”)

The Icelandic word “heiður” means “honor”. The concept of honor has perhaps shifted from what it was during the Vikings era —but honor in the form of personal integrity is still held in high regard.

When capitalized, the Icelandic word “heiður” becomes a girl’s name. It also serves as the second component in the Icelandic dithematic girl names listed below.

Name Root Components Possible Meaning of the Name
Ragnheiður Ragn (counsel, advice) + Heiður (honor) Honorable counsel
Aðalheiður Aðal (noble) + Heiður (honor) Noble honor
Álfheiður Álf (elf) + Heiður (honor) Elf’s honor
Arnheiður Arn (eagle) + Heiður (honor) Eagle’s honor
Heiður Heiður (honor) honor
Bjarnheiður Bjarn (bear) + Heiður (honor) Bear’s honor

Names with the root “sigr” (meaning “victory”)

Victory is a theme that has inspired names across many languages. For instance, the names Victoria and Victor used in English come from the Latin word “victoria”, meaning “victory”.

Victory is also a popular theme in Icelandic names. But in contrast to Latin names constructed from a single theme, in Icelandic girl names, the theme of victory is usually paired with another theme to form names with more complex meanings.

The Icelandic word “sigur” —and the Old Norse word “sigr” from which it is derived— both mean “victory”. Both these forms of the word appear as the first component of a number of Icelandic girl names.

Name Root Components Possible Meaning of the Name
Sigríður Sigr (victory) + Friður (beautiful, fair) Beautiful victory
Sigrún Sigr (victory) + Rún (rune) Victory rune
Sigurbjörg Sigur (victory) + Björg (protection, help) Victorious protection
Sigurlaug Sigur (victory) + Laug (pool) Victory pool
Sigurlína Sigur (victory) + Lína (line) Victory line
Sigþrúður Sig (victory) + Þrúður (strength) Victorious strength
Sigurdís Sigur (victory) + Dís (goddess) Victorious goddess
Sigfríður Sig (victory) + Friður (beautiful, fair) Beautiful victory

Icelandic female names that contain the root “björg” (meaning “protection”)

Name Root Components Possible Meaning of the Name
Guðbjörg Guð (god) + Björg (protection, help) God’s protection
Björg Björg (protection, help) Protection, help
Sigurbjörg Sigur (victory) + Björg (protection, help) Victorious protection
Ásbjörg Ás (god) + Björg (protection, help) God’s protection
Aðalbjörg Aðal (noble) + Björg (protection, help) Noble protection
Arnbjörg Arn (eagle) + Björg (protection, help) Eagle’s protection
Sæbjörg Sæ (sea) + Björg (protection, help) Sea protection
Salbjörg Sal (hall) + Björg (protection, help) Hall protection

Icelandic girl names that contain the root “Þór” meaning “Thor” (the Norse god of thunder)

Name Root Components Possible Meaning of the Name
Þórunn Þór (Thor, the Norse god of thunder) + Unn (wave) Thor’s wave
Þóra Þór (Thor, the Norse god of thunder) Thor
Þóranna Þór (Thor) + Anna (grace) Thor’s grace
Þórdís Þór (Thor) + Dís (goddess) Thor’s goddess
Þórey Þór (Thor) + Ey (island) Thor’s island
Þórlaug Þór (Thor) + Laug (pool) Thor’s pool
Þorbjörg Þór (Thor) + Björg (protection, help) Thor’s protection