Chinese names & surnames with meanings: A complete guide

Ready to meet new people and introduce yourself in Chinese? Then let’s talk about Western and Chinese names in Mandarin!

Learning Mandarin is a little bit different than learning other languages. If you’re learning Spanish or French, then you probably won’t have to think twice about how to introduce yourself in your target language — you’d simply use your given name.

However, names are significantly different in Chinese, so some learners choose to adopt a Chinese name to use when speaking Chinese. That means that you’d be giving yourself a whole new name, which may sound similar to your given name or may be completely different. This can be an exciting opportunity to adopt a new persona, as learning a new language definitely impacts your personality!

But don’t worry, you don’t need to rush into making any major decisions if you’re just starting to learn Mandarin Chinese. You can start with a simple transliteration of your name and pick a more legitimate Chinese name once you feel ready to do so.

In this handy guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about Western names in Chinese, and we’ll show you how to choose your own Chinese name!

Table of contents

Introducing and asking for names in Chinese

Learning how to introduce yourself in Chinese is one of the first things you’ll want to master. Not only does “my name is” typically come right after saying hello in Chinese, but it’s also an important part of writing emails and doing business in China. Plus, as a learner, you’ll often be in situations where you’ll have to introduce yourself in Chinese, like at the start of the semester or when you visit China to travel, study, or work.

Group introducing and asking for names in Chinese.

Chinese name essentials

Let’s start by covering the absolute essentials. Chinese names usually consist of a family name followed by a given name, with the family name being mostly just one character and the given name one or two characters. Unlike in the West, a name often holds precedence and is a key part of one’s identity. Chinese names are chosen with careful consideration to convey specific qualities or blessings that families wish upon their children, as names come with deep meanings and aspirations.

When introducing yourself or asking for someone’s name, it’s crucial to recognize the structure and significance of Chinese names. The cultural emphasis on respect and formality means addressing someone properly is extremely important.

How to say first name in Chinese

The first name in Chinese, or given name, is referred to as 名 (míng).

The order of the names is reversed in Chinese, so people would typically mention their first name after stating their family or last names. While introducing yourself by your full name may be seen as cold or formal in the West, that is generally not the case in Chinese, as introducing yourself with your given and family name is very common. However, in more casual contexts, particularly among friends or younger people, introducing yourself with just your given name is acceptable too.

How to say last name in Chinese

The last name in Chinese, or the family name, is called 姓 (xìng).

It holds particular importance in Chinese society, as it often carries the weight of familial heritage and lineage. It precedes the given name in the Chinese naming convention. Because of this, asking for someone’s family name during a formal introduction is especially important, as it highlights respect for one’s family background and heritage. In less formal situations, this level of detail might not be necessary, but it’s always better to err on the side of formality when unsure.

My name is in Chinese

Although introducing yourself in a new language can be stressful the first few times, you’ll have no problem once you learn a handful of phrases to say my name is in Chinese. The good news is that most of your basic characteristics, like your name, nationality, and Chinese zodiac sign won’t change at all, so you can just memorize a few of them and be set!

English Chinese Pinyin Pronunciation Formality
Hello, I am called ______. 你好,我叫______。 nǐ hǎo , wǒ jiào ______。 nii hao woo jiaw Informal
My name is ______. 我的名字是______。 wǒ de míng zi shì ______。 woo de ming tzyh shyh Neutral
Hello everyone, my name is called ______. 大家好,我的名字叫______。 dà jiā hǎo , wǒ de míng zi jiào ______。 dah jia hao woo de ming tzyh jiaw Informal
Hello, my surname is ______, and my given name is ______. 您好,我姓______,名______。 nín hǎo , wǒ xìng ______, míng ______。 nin hao woo shinq ming Formal
Hello everyone, I am called ______. 大家好,我叫______。 dà jiā hǎo , wǒ jiào ______。 dah jia hao woo jiaw Informal
I myself am named ______. 本人名叫______。 běn rén míng jiào ______。 been ren ming jiaw Formal
Hello everyone, I am called ______. 各位好,我叫______。 gè wèi hǎo , wǒ jiào ______。 geh wey hao woo jiaw Formal
Please allow me to introduce myself, I am called ______. 请允许我自我介绍一下,我叫______。 qǐng yǔn xǔ wǒ zì wǒ jiè shào yí xià , wǒ jiào ______。 chiing yeun sheu woo tzyh woo jieh shaw yi shiah woo jiaw Formal
My Chinese name is ______. 我的中文名是______。 wǒ de zhōng wén míng shì ______。 woo de jong wen ming shyh Neutral
My English name is ______. 我的英文名是______。 wǒ de yīng wén míng shì ______。 woo de ing wen ming shyh Neutral
My full name is ______. 我的全名是______。 wǒ de quán míng shì ______。 woo de chyuan ming shyh Neutral
Hello everyone, you can call me ______. 大家好,你们可以叫我______。 dà jiā hǎo , nǐ men kě yǐ jiào wǒ ______。 dah jia hao nii mhen kee yii jiaw woo Informal
My nickname is ______. 我的昵称是______。 wǒ de nì chēng shì ______。 woo de nih cheng shyh Informal
Pleased to meet you, my name is ______. 幸会,我叫______。 xìng huì , wǒ jiào ______。 shinq huey woo jiaw Formal
Hello there, you can call me ______. 你好,可以叫我______。 nǐ hǎo , kě yǐ jiào wǒ ______。 nii hao kee yii jiaw woo Informal
Let me introduce myself to everyone, I am called ______. 向大家介绍一下,我叫______。 xiàng dà jiā jiè shào yí xià , wǒ jiào ______。 shianq dah jia jieh shaw i shiah woo jiaw Neutral

What is your name in Chinese

Besides learning how to introduce yourself in Chinese, you’ll also want to learn how to ask people for their names. Not only will this allow you to be polite after someone asks for your name in Chinese, but you’ll also be able to make the first move and meet new people! After all, making friends and practicing constantly is one of the best ways to learn Chinese, so don’t be shy!

Asking what is your name in Chinese.

English Chinese Pinyin Pronunciation Formality
What's your name? 你叫什么名字? nǐ jiào shén me míng zi ? nii jiaw shern me ming tzyh Informal
What is your honorable surname? 您贵姓? nín guì xìng ? nin guey shinq Formal
May I ask, how should I address you? 请问您怎么称呼? qǐng wèn nín zěn me chēng hu ? chiing wenn nin tzeen me cheng hu Formal
What is your full name? 你的全名是什么? nǐ de quán míng shì shén me ? nii de chyuan ming shyh shern me Neutral
Can you tell me your name? 能告诉我你的名字吗? néng gào sù wǒ nǐ de míng zi ma ? neng gaw suh woo nii de ming tzyh mha Informal
What are you called? 你叫什么? nǐ jiào shén me ? nii jiaw shern me Very informal
Your name is? 您的姓名是? nín de xìng míng shì ? nin de shinq ming shyh Formal
How may I address you? 您怎么称呼? nín zěn me chēng hu ? nin tzeen me cheng hu Formal
How should I address this gentleman/lady? 怎么称呼这位先生/女士? zěn me chēng hu zhè wèi xiān sheng/ nǚ shì ? tzeen me cheng hu jeh wey shian sheng neu shyh Formal
May I ask what your nickname is? 请问你的小名是什么? qǐng wèn nǐ de xiǎo míng shì shén me ? chiing wenn nii de sheau ming shyh shern me Informal
Hello, may I ask what your name is? 你好,可以问一下你叫什么吗? nǐ hǎo , kě yǐ wèn yí xià nǐ jiào shén me ma ? nii hao kee yii wenn i shiah nii jiaw shern me mha Informal
How should I properly address you? 我怎样称呼您比较合适? wǒ zěn yàng chēng hu nín bǐ jiào hé shì ? woo tzeen yanq cheng hu nin bii jiaw her shyh Formal
I heard you are ______, so what is your full name? 听说您叫______,那您的全名是? tīng shuō nín jiào ______, nà nín de quán míng shì ? ting shuo nin jiaw nah nin de chyuan ming shyh Neutral to formal

Learning how to translate a Western name into Chinese

Now that you know how to say your name in Chinese, you might be wondering, “Wait, how do I say my name in Chinese?” Fortunately, you can easily translate your name into Chinese by finding characters that sound similar to your given name. To do this, you have three options:

  1. Find characters that are phonetic matches to your name’s syllables.
  2. Plug your name into Google Translate to get a quick translation!
  3. Find your name in one of our lists below.

Almost all foreign names have a “set” translation into Chinese, which is helpful when speaking about foreign people or fictional characters in Chinese. For example, Leonardo DiCaprio is 莱昂纳多 · 迪卡普里奥 (lái áng nà duō · dí kǎ pǔ lǐ ào) and Harry Potter is 哈利·波特 (hā lì · bō tè).

However, keep in mind that translating names like this into Chinese doesn’t really match local names. It’ll be very evident that it’s a foreign name, so keep this in mind if you’re thinking about choosing your Chinese name. We’ll cover how to pick an authentic Chinese name later in the article, but, for now, let’s dive into our lists of the most common foreign names in Chinese!

Top 100 most common male English names in Chinese

If you have a relatively common English name, then you’ll likely be able to find a direct “translation” into Chinese. You can use one of these if you’ll just be visiting China for a little while or don’t have any long-term plans in China or interacting with Chinese society. If you do plan to live in China or work with Chinese colleagues long-term, however, you can consider creating your own Chinese name from scratch, but more on that later.

Here are the 100 most common male English names in Chinese:

A list of boys names in Chinese.

English Chinese Pinyin Pronunciation
Aaron 亚伦 yà lún yah luen
Adam 亚当 yà dāng yah dang
Alan 阿伦 ā lún a luen
Albert 阿尔伯特 ā ěr bó tè a eel bor teh
Alexander 亚历山大 yà lì shān dà yah lih shan dah
Andrew 安德鲁 ān dé lǔ an der luu
Anthony 安东尼 ān dōng ní an dong ni
Arthur 亚瑟 yà sè yah seh
Austin 奥斯汀 ào sī tīng aw sy ting
Benjamin 本杰明 běn jié míng been jye ming
Billy 比利 bǐ lì bii lih
Bobby 博比 bó bǐ bor bii
Brandon 布兰登 bù lán dēng buh lan deng
Brian 布莱恩 bù lái ēn buh lai en
Bruce 布鲁斯 bù lǔ sī buh luu sy
Bryan 布莱恩 bù lái ēn buh lai en
Carl 卡尔 kǎ ěr kaa eel
Charles 查尔斯 chá ěr sī char eel sy
Christian 克里斯蒂安 kè lǐ sī dì ān keh lii sy dih an
Christopher 克里斯托弗 kè lǐ sī tuō fú keh lii sy tuo fwu
Daniel 丹尼尔 dān ní ěr dan ni eel
David 大卫 dà wèi dah wey
Dennis 丹尼斯 dān ní sī dan ni sy
Donald 唐纳德 táng nà dé tarng nah der
Douglas 道格拉斯 dào gé lā sī daw ger lha sy
Dylan 迪伦 dí lún dyi luen
Edward 爱德华 ài dé huá ay der hwa
Elijah 伊利亚 yī lì yà i lih yah
Eric 埃里克 āi lǐ kè ai lii keh
Ethan 伊桑 yī sāng i sang
Eugene 尤金 yóu jīn you jin
Frank 弗兰克 fú lán kè fwu lan keh
Gabriel 加布里埃尔 jiā bù lǐ āi ěr jia buh lii ai eel
Gary 加里 jiā lǐ jia lii
George 乔治 qiáo zhì chyau jyh
Gerald 杰拉德 jié lā dé jye lha der
Gregory 格里高利 gé lǐ gāo lì ger lii gau lih
Harold 哈罗德 hā luó dé ha luo der
Henry 亨利 hēng lì heng lih
Jack 杰克 jié kè jye keh
Jacob 雅各布 yǎ gè bù yea geh buh
James 詹姆斯 zhān mǔ sī jan muu sy
Jason 杰森 jié sēn jye sen
Jeffrey 杰弗里 jié fú lǐ jye fwu lii
Jeremy 杰里米 jié lǐ mǐ jye lii mii
Jerry 杰瑞 jié ruì jye ruey
Jesse 杰西 jié xī jye shi
Joe qiáo chyau
John 约翰 yuē hàn iue hann
Johnny 约翰尼 yuē hàn ní iue hann ni
Jonathan 乔纳森 qiáo nà sēn chyau nah sen
Jordan 乔丹 qiáo dān chyau dan
Jose 约瑟 yuē sè iue seh
Joseph 约瑟夫 yuē sè fū iue seh fu
Joshua 约书亚 yuē shū yà iue shu yah
Juan 胡安 hú ān hwu an
Justin 贾斯汀 jiǎ sī tīng jea sy ting
Keith 凯斯 kǎi sī kae sy
Kenneth 肯尼斯 kěn ní sī keen ni sy
Kevin 凯文 kǎi wén kae wen
Kyle 凯尔 kǎi ěr kae eel
Larry 拉里 lā lǐ lha lii
Lawrence 劳伦斯 láo lún sī lau luen sy
Logan 罗根 luó gēn luo gen
Louis 路易斯 lù yì sī luh yih sy
Mark 马克 mǎ kè maa keh
Matthew 马修 mǎ xiū maa shiou
Michael 迈克尔 mài kè ěr may keh eel
Nathan 内森 nèi sēn ney sen
Nicolas 尼古拉斯 ní gǔ lā sī ni guu lha sy
Noah 诺亚 nuò yà nuoh yah
Patrick 帕特里克 pà tè lǐ kè pah teh lii keh
Paul 保罗 bǎo luó bao luo
Peter 彼得 bǐ dé bii der
Philip 菲利普 fēi lì pǔ fei lih puu
Ralph 拉尔夫 lā ěr fū lha eel fu
Randy 兰迪 lán dí lan dyi
Raymond 雷蒙德 léi méng dé lei meng der
Richard 理查德 lǐ chá dé lii char der
Robert 罗伯特 luó bó tè luo bor teh
Roger 罗杰 luó jié luo jye
Ronald 罗纳德 luó nà dé luo nah der
Roy 罗伊 luó yī luo i
Russel 罗素 luó sù luo suh
Ryan 瑞恩 ruì ēn ruey en
Samuel 塞缪尔 sài miù ěr say miow eel
Scott 斯科特 sī kē tè sy ke teh
Sean 肖恩 xiāo ēn shiau en
Stephen 史蒂芬 shǐ dì fēn shyy dih fen
Steven 史蒂文 shǐ dì wén shyy dih wen
Terry 特里 tè lǐ teh lii
Thomas 托马斯 tuō mǎ sī tuo maa sy
Timothy 蒂莫西 dì mò xī dih moh shi
Tyler 泰勒 tài lè tay leh
Vincent 文森特 wén sēn tè wen sen teh
Walter 沃尔特 wò ěr tè woh eel teh
Wayne 韦恩 wéi ēn wei en
William 威廉 wēi lián uei lian
Willie 威利 wēi lì uei lih
Zachary 扎克瑞 zhā kè ruì ja keh ruey

Top 100 most common female English names in Chinese

And here are the most common female English names in Chinese:

A list of girls names in Chinese.

English Chinese Pinyin Pronunciation
Abigail 阿比盖尔 ā bǐ gài ěr a bii gay eel
Alexis 亚历克西斯 yà lì kè xī sī yah lih keh shi sy
Alice 爱丽丝 ài lì sī ay lih sy
Amanda 阿曼达 ā màn dá a mann dar
Amber 安伯尔 ān bó ěr an bor eel
Amy 艾米 ài mǐ ay mii
Andrea 安德莉亚 ān dé lì yà an der lih yah
Angela 安吉拉 ān jí lā an jyi lha
Ann ān an
Anna 安娜 ān nà an nah
Ashley 阿什莉 ā shí lì a shyr lih
Barbara 芭芭拉 bā bā lā ba ba lha
Betty 贝蒂 bèi dì bey dih
Beverly 贝弗莉 bèi fú lì bey fwu lih
Brenda 布兰达 bù lán dá buh lan dar
Brittany 布里特妮 bù lǐ tè nī buh lii teh nhi
Carol 卡萝尔 kǎ luó ěr kaa luo eel
Carolyn 卡洛琳 kǎ luò lín kaa luoh lin
Catherine 凯瑟琳 kǎi sè lín kae seh lin
Charlotte 夏洛特 xià luò tè shiah luoh teh
Cheryl 谢丽尔 xiè lì ěr shieh lih eel
Christina 克里斯蒂娜 kè lǐ sī dì nà keh lii sy dih nah
Cynthia 辛西娅 xīn xī yà shin shi yah
Danielle 丹妮尔 dān nī ěr dan nhi eel
Deborah 黛博拉 dài bó lā day bor lha
Delia 迪莉娅 dí lì yà dyi lih yah
Denise 丹妮丝 dān nī sī dan nhi sy
Diana 戴安娜 dài ān nà day an nah
Donna 唐娜 táng nà tarng nah
Dora 朵拉 duǒ lā duo lha
Doris 多丽丝 duō lì sī duo lih sy
Dorothy 多萝西 duō luó xī duo luo shi
Elizabeth 伊丽莎白 yī lì shā bái i lih sha bair
Emily 艾米莉 ài mǐ lì ay mii lih
Emma 艾玛 ài mǎ ay maa
Evelyn 伊芙琳 yī fú lín i fwu lin
Frances 弗朗西丝 fú lǎng xī sī fwu laang shi sy
Gloria 格罗丽娅 gé luó lì yà ger luo lih yah
Grace 格雷丝 gé léi sī ger leei sy
Hannah 汉娜 hàn nà hann nah
Heather 希瑟 xī sè shi seh
Helen 海伦 hǎi lún hae luen
Isabella 伊莎贝拉 yī shā bèi lā i sha bey lha
Jacqueline 杰奎琳 jié kuí lín jye kwei lin
Janet 珍妮特 zhēn nī tè jen nhi teh
Janice 珍妮丝 zhēn nī sī jen nhi sy
Jean zhēn jen
Jennifer 詹妮弗 zhēn nī fú jen nhi fwu
Jessica 杰西卡 jié xī kǎ jye shi kaa
Joan qióng chyong
Joyce 乔伊斯 qiáo yī sī chyau i sy
Judith 朱迪思 zhū dí sī ju dyi sy
Judy 朱迪 zhū dí ju dyi
Julia 茱莉亚 zhū lì yà ju lih yah
Julie 朱莉 zhū lì ju lih
Karen 凯伦 kǎi lún kae luen
Katherine 凯瑟琳 kǎi sè lín kae seh lin
Kayla 凯拉 kǎi lā kae lha
Kelly 凯丽 kǎi lì kae lih
Kennedy 肯尼迪 kěn ní dí keen ni dyi
Kimberly 金伯莉 jīn bó lì jin bor lih
Laura 劳拉 láo lā lau lha
Lauren 劳伦 láo lún lau luen
Leighton 莱顿 lái dùn lai duenn
Linda 琳达 lín dá lin dar
Lisa 丽莎 lì shā lih sha
Madison 麦迪逊 mài dí xùn may dyi shiunn
Maggie 玛吉 mǎ jí maa jyi
Margaret 玛格丽特 mǎ gé lì tè maa ger lih teh
Maria 玛丽亚 mǎ lì yà maa lih yah
Marie 玛丽 mǎ lì maa lih
Marilyn 玛丽莲 mǎ lì lián maa lih lian
Martha 玛莎 mǎ shā maa sha
Mary 玛丽 mǎ lì maa lih
Megan 梅根 méi gēn mei gen
Melissa 梅丽莎 méi lì shā mei lih sha
Michelle 米歇尔 mǐ xiē ěr mii shie eel
Nancy 南希 nán xī nan shi
Natalie 娜塔莉 nà tǎ lì nah taa lih
Nicole 妮可 nī kě nhi kee
Olivia 奥利维亚 ào lì wéi yà aw lih wei yah
Pamela 帕梅拉 pà méi lā pah mei lha
Patricia 帕特里西娅 pà tè lǐ xī yà pah teh lii shi yah
Rachel 瑞秋 ruì qiū lruey chiou
Rebecca 丽贝卡 lì bèi kǎ lih bey kaa
Rose 露丝 lù sī lih bey kaa
Ruth 露丝 lù sī luh sy
Samantha 萨曼莎 sà màn shā sah mann sha
Sandy 桑迪 sāng dí sang dyi
Sandra 桑德拉 sāng dé lā sang der lha
Sara 莎拉 shā lā sha lha
Sharon 莎伦 shā lún sha luen
Shirley 雪莉 xuě lì sheue lih
Sophia 索菲亚 suǒ fēi yà suoo fei yah
Stephanie 史黛芙妮 shǐ dài fú nī shyy day fwu nhi
Susan 苏珊 sū shān su shan
Taylor 泰勒 tài lè tay leh
Tate 泰特 tài tè tay teh
Teresa 特蕾莎 tè lěi shā teh leei sha
Victoria 维多利亚 wéi duō lì yà wei duo lih yah
Virginia 弗吉尼亚 fú jí ní yà fwu jyi ni yah

Most common Spanish names in Chinese

Here, you’ll find a cozy list of the 100 most common Spanish names translated into Chinese, maintaining their unique charm and sounding just right in both languages:

English Chinese Pinyin Pronunciation
Abril 阿布里尔 ā bù lǐ ěr a buh lii eel
Alejandro 亚历杭德罗 yà lì háng dé luó yah lih harng der luo
Alexander 亚历山大 yà lì shān dà yah lih shan dah
Benjamín 本杰明 běn jié míng been jye ming
Camila 卡米拉 kǎ mǐ lā kaa mii lha
Carlos 卡洛斯 kǎ luò sī kaa luoh sy
Catalina 卡塔琳娜 kǎ tǎ lín nà kaa taa lin nah
Daniel 丹尼尔 dān ní ěr dan ni eel
Daniella 丹妮埃拉 dān nī āi lā dan nhi ai lha
Diego 迭戈 dié gē dye ge
Emmanuel 埃曼努埃尔 āi màn nǔ āi ěr ai mann nuu ai eel
Fernanda 费尔南达 fèi ěr nán dá fey eel nan dar
Gabriela 加布里埃拉 jiā bù lǐ āi lā jia buh lii ai lha
Isabella 伊莎贝拉 yī shā bèi lā i sha bey lha
Jesús 赫苏斯 hè sū sī heh su sy
Joaquín 华金 huá jīn hwa jin
Jorge 豪尔赫 háo ěr hè haur eel heh
José 何塞 hé sài her sai
Juan 胡安 hú ān hwu an
Julieta 茱莉塔 zhū lì tǎ ju lih taa
Lucas 卢卡斯 lú kǎ sī lu kaa sy
Lucía 露西亚 lù xī yà luh shi yah
Luciana 露西安娜 lù xī ān nà luh shi an nah
Luis 路易斯 lù yì sī luh yih sy
Manuel 曼努埃尔 màn nǔ āi ěr mann nuu ai eel
María Fernanda 玛丽亚·费尔南达 mǎ lì yà · fèi ěr nán dá maa lih yah · fey eel nan dar
María José 玛丽亚·何塞 mǎ lì yà · hé sài maa lih yah · her sai
Mariana 玛丽安娜 mǎ lì ān nà maa lih an nah
Martín 马丁 mǎ dīng maa ding
Martina 玛蒂娜 mǎ dì nà maa dih nah
Mateo 马特奥 mǎ tè ào maa teh aw
Matías 马蒂亚斯 mǎ dì yà sī maa dih yah sy
Mía 米亚 mǐ yà mii yah
Natalia 娜塔莉亚 nà tǎ lì yà nah taa lih yah
Nicolás 尼古拉斯 ní gǔ lā sī ni guu lha sy
Nicole 妮可 nī kě nhi kee
Pablo 巴勃罗 bā bó luó ba bor luo
Paula 宝拉 bǎo lā bao lha
Pedro 佩德罗 pèi dé luó pey der luo
Samantha 萨曼莎 sà màn shā sah mann sha
Samuel 塞缪尔 sài miù ěr say miow eel
Santiago 圣地亚哥 shèng dì yà gē shenq dih yah ge
Sara 莎拉 shā lā sha lha
Sebastián 塞巴斯蒂安 sài bā sī dì ān say ba sy dih an
Sofía 索菲亚 suǒ fēi yà suoo fei yah
Tomás 托马斯 tuō mǎ sī tuo maa sy
Valentina 瓦伦蒂娜 wǎ lún dì nà waa luen dih nah
Valeria 瓦莱里娅 wǎ lái lǐ yà waa lai lii yah
Victoria 维多利亚 wéi duō lì yà wei duo lih yah
Ximena 西梅娜 xī méi nà shi mei nah

Most common French names in Chinese

Let’s take a look at how some of the most popular French names translate into Chinese. The following list aims to maintain the essence of French names while adapting them to Chinese phonetics:

English Chinese Pinyin Pronunciation
Alain 阿兰 ā lán a lan
Andre 安德烈 ān dé liè an der lieh
Anne 安妮 ān nī an nhi
Bernard 伯纳德 bó nà dé bor nah der
Bruno 布鲁诺 bù lǔ nuò buh luu nuoh
Catherine 凯瑟琳 kǎi sè lín kae seh lin
Christian 克里斯蒂安 kè lǐ sī dì ān keh lii sy dih an
Christine 克里斯蒂娜 kè lǐ sī dì nà keh lii sy dih nah
Christophe 克里斯托弗 kè lǐ sī tuō fú keh lii sy tuo fwu
Claude 克劳德 kè láo dé keh lau der
Daniel 丹尼尔 dān ní ěr dan ni eel
David 大卫 dà wèi dah wey
Didier 迪迪埃 dí dí āi dyi dyi ai
Dominique 多米尼克 duō mǐ ní kè duo mii ni keh
Eric 埃里克 āi lǐ kè ai lii keh
Francis 弗朗西斯 fú lǎng xī sī fwu laang shi sy
Georges 乔治 qiáo zhì chyau jyh
Guy 盖伊 gài yī gay i
Isabelle 伊莎贝尔 yī shā bèi ěr i sha bey eel
Jacqueline 杰奎琳 jié kuí lín jye kwei lin
Jacques 雅克 yǎ kè yea keh
Jean ràng ranq
Jean-Claude 让·克劳德 ràng · kè láo dé ranq · kè láo dé
Jean-Pierre 让·皮埃尔 ràng · pí āi ěr ranq · pyi ai eel
Joseph 约瑟夫 yuē sè fū iue seh fu
Laurent 劳伦特 láo lún tè lau luen teh
Marc 马克 mǎ kè maa keh
Marcel 马塞尔 mǎ sài ěr maa say eel
Marie 玛丽 mǎ lì maa lih
Martine 玛蒂娜 mǎ dì nà maa dih nah
Michel 米歇尔 mǐ xiē ěr mii shie eel
Monique 莫妮克 mò nī kè moh nhi keh
Nathalie 娜塔莉 nà tǎ lì nah taa lih
Nicolas 尼古拉斯 ní gǔ lā sī ni guu lha sy
Nicole 妮可 nī kě nhi kee
Olivier 奥利维尔 ào lì wéi ěr aw lih wei eel
Pascal 帕斯卡 pà sī kǎ pah sy kaa
Patrick 帕特里克 pà tè lǐ kè pah teh lii keh
Philippe 菲利普 fēi lì pǔ fei lih puu
Pierre 皮埃尔 pí āi ěr pyi ai eel
Rene 雷内 léi nèi lei ney
Robert 罗伯特 luó bó tè luo bor teh
Roger 罗杰 luó jié luo jye
Sandrine 桑德琳 sāng dé lín sang der lin
Serge 塞尔吉 sài ěr jí say eel jyi
Sophie 索菲 suǒ fēi suoo fei
Sylvie 西尔维 xī ěr wéi shi eel wei
Thierry 蒂埃里 dì āi lǐ dih ai lii
Valerie 瓦莱丽 wǎ lái lì waa lai lih
Yves 伊夫 yī fū i fu

Most common German names in Chinese

Below, you’ll find a list of the top 100 most common German names translated into Chinese, focused on maintaining phonetic resemblance:

Learn your German name in Chinese.

English Chinese Pinyin Pronunciation
Andrea 安德莉亚 ān dé lì yà an der lih yah
Andreas 安德烈亚斯 ān dé liè yà sī an der lieh yah sy
Barbara 芭芭拉 bā bā lā ba ba lha
Bernd 伯恩德 bó ēn dé bor en der
Birgit 比吉特 bǐ jí tè bii jyi teh
Brigitte 布丽奇特 bù lì qí tè buh lih chyi teh
Christa 克丽斯塔 kè lì sī tǎ keh lih sy taa
Christian 克里斯蒂安 kè lǐ sī dì ān keh lii sy dih an
Christine 克里斯蒂娜 kè lǐ sī dì nà keh lii sy dih nah
Claudia 克劳迪娅 kè láo dí yà keh lau dyi yah
Dieter 迪特尔 dí tè ěr dyi teh eel
Elisabeth 伊丽莎白 yī lì shā bái i lih sha bair
Elke 埃尔克 āi ěr kè ai eel keh
Erika 艾莉卡 ài lì kǎ ay lih kaa
Frank 弗兰克 fú lán kè fwu lan keh
Franz 弗兰兹 fú lán zī fwu lan tzy
Gerhard 格哈德 gé hā dé ger ha der
Gisela 吉塞拉 jí sài lā jyi say lha
Günter 君特 jūn tè jiun teh
Hans 汉斯 hàn sī hann sy
Heike 海可 hǎi kě hae kee
Heinz 海因茨 hǎi yīn cí hae in tsyr
Helga 海尔格 hǎi ěr gé hae eel ger
Helmut 赫尔穆特 hè ěr mù tè heh eel muh teh
Herbert 赫伯特 hè bó tè heh bor teh
Horst 霍斯特 huò sī tè huoh sy teh
Ingrid 英格丽 yīng gé lì ing ger lih
Josef 约瑟夫 yuē sè fū iue seh fu
Jürgen 尤尔根 yóu ěr gēn you eel gen
Karin 卡琳 kǎ lín kaa lin
Karl 卡尔 kǎ ěr kaa eel
Karl-Heinz 卡尔·海因茨 kǎ ěr · hǎi yīn cí kaa eel · hae in tsyr
Klaus 克劳斯 kè láo sī keh lau sy
Manfred 曼弗雷德 màn fú léi dé mann fwu lei der
Maria 玛丽亚 mǎ lì yà maa lih yah
Martin 马丁 mǎ dīng maa ding
Michael 迈克尔 mài kè ěr may keh eel
Monika 莫妮卡 mò nī kǎ moh nhi kaa
Peter 彼得 bǐ dé bii der
Petra 佩特拉 pèi tè lā pey teh lha
Renate 蕾娜特 lěi nà tè leei nah teh
Sabine 萨比娜 sà bǐ nà sah bii nah
Stefan 史蒂芬 shǐ dì fēn shyy dih fen
Susanne 苏珊娜 sū shān nà su shan nah
Thomas 托马斯 tuō mǎ sī tuo maa sy
Ursula 厄休拉 è xiū lā eh shiou lha
Uwe 乌韦 wū wéi u wei
Walter 沃尔特 wò ěr tè woh eel teh
Werner 维尔纳 wéi ěr nà wei eel nah
Wolfgang 沃夫冈 wò fū gāng woh fu gang

Most common Italian names in Chinese

Here are 50 popular Italian names and their phonetic translations into Chinese:

English Chinese Pinyin Pronunciation
Alessandro 亚历桑德罗 yà lì sāng dé luó yah lih sang der luo
Alice 爱丽丝 ài lì sī ay lih sy
Andrea 安德烈 ān dé liè an der lieh
Angela 安吉拉 ān jí lā an jyi lha
Angelo 安杰洛 ān jié luò an jye luoh
Anna 安娜 ān nà an nah
Antonio 安东尼奥 ān dōng ní ào an dong ni aw
Aurora 奥萝拉 ào luó lā aw luo lha
Beatrice 比阿特丽斯 bǐ ā tè lì sī bii a teh lih sy
Carlo 卡罗 kǎ luó kaa luo
Carmela 卡梅拉 kǎ méi lā kaa mei lha
Caterina 卡特琳娜 kǎ tè lín nà kaa teh lin nah
Edoardo 爱德华多 ài dé huá duō ay der hwa duo
Emma 艾玛 ài mǎ ay maa
Flavio 弗拉维奥 fú lā wéi ào fwu lha wei aw
Francesca 弗朗切丝卡 fú lǎng qiè sī kǎ fwu laang chieh sy kaa
Francesco 弗朗切斯科 fú lǎng qiè sī kē fwu laang chieh sy ke
Gabriele 加布里埃尔 jiā bù lǐ āi ěr jia buh lii ai eel
Gianna 吉安娜 jí ān nà jyi an nah
Ginevra 吉妮弗拉 jí nī fú lā jyi nhi fwu lha
Giorgia 乔治娅 qiáo zhì yà chyau jyh yah
Giovanna 乔凡娜 qiáo fán nà chyau farn nah
Giovanni 乔瓦尼 qiáo wǎ ní chyau waa ni
Giuseppe 朱塞佩 zhū sài pèi ju sai pey
Giuseppina 朱塞平娜 zhū sài píng nà ju sai pyng nah
Greta 格蕾塔 gé lěi tǎ ger leei taa
Guilia 茱莉亚 zhū lì yà ju lih yah
Laura 劳拉 láo lā lau lha
Leonardo 莱昂纳多 lái áng nà duō lai arng nah duo
Lorenzo 洛伦佐 luò lún zuǒ luoh luen tzuoo
Luca 卢卡 lú kǎ lu kaa
Lucia 露西亚 lù xī yà luh shi yah
Luigi 路易吉 lù yì jí luh yih jyi
Marco 马可 mǎ kě maa kee
Maria 玛丽亚 mǎ lì yà maa lih yah
Mario 马里奥 mǎ lǐ ào maa lii aw
Mattia 马蒂亚 mǎ dì yà maa dih yah
Pietro 彼得罗 bǐ dé luó bii der luo
Riccardo 里卡多 lǐ kǎ duō lii kaa duo
Roberto 罗伯托 luó bó tuō luo bor tuo
Rosa 罗莎 luó shā luo sha
Salvatore 塞尔瓦托 sài ěr wǎ tuō say eel waa tuo
Sara 莎拉 shā lā sha lha
Sophia 索菲亚 suǒ fēi yà suoo fei yah
Stefano 斯蒂法诺 sī dì fǎ nuò sy dih faa nuoh
Stella 斯特拉 sī tè lā sy teh lha
Teresa 特蕾莎 tè lěi shā teh leei sha
Tommaso 托马索 tuō mǎ suǒ tuo maa suoo
Valentina 瓦伦蒂娜 wǎ lún dì nà waa luen dih nah
Vincenzo 文森佐 wén sēn zuǒ wen sen tzuoo

Most common Portuguese names in Chinese

People from Portugal, Brazil, or any other Portuguese-speaking region may find their names on the list below:

A list of most common Portuguese names in Chinese.

English Chinese Pinyin Pronunciation
Inês 伊内斯 yī nèi sī i ney sy
João 约翰 yuē hàn iue hann
Mariana 玛丽安娜 mǎ lì ān nà maa lih an nah
Miguel 米格尔 mǐ gé ěr mii ger eel
Joana 乔安娜 qiáo ān nà chyau an nah
Pedro 佩德罗 pèi dé luó pey der luo
Ana 亚拿 yà ná yah na
Diogo 迪奥戈 dí ào gē dyi aw ge
Maria 玛丽亚 mǎ lì yà maa lih yah
Gonçalo 贡萨洛 gòng sà luò gonq sah luoh
Rita 丽塔 lì tǎ lih taa
Ricardo 里卡多 lǐ kǎ duō lii kaa duo
Carolina 卡罗莱纳 kǎ luó lái nà kaa luo lai nah
Tomás 托马斯 tuō mǎ sī tuo maa sy
Sofia 苏菲亚 sū fēi yà su fei yah
Alexandre 亚历山大 yà lì shān dà yah lih shan dah
Beatriz 比阿特丽斯 bǐ ā tè lì sī bii a teh lih sy
Afonso 阿丰索 ā fēng suǒ a feng suoo
Raquel 拉奎尔 lā kuí ěr lha kwei eel
Rui ruì ruey
Sara 莎拉 shā lā sha lha
Luis 路易斯 lù yì sī luh yih sy
Marta 玛尔塔 mǎ ěr tǎ maa eel taa
Guilherme 吉列尔梅 jí liè ěr méi jyi lieh eel mei
Liliana 莉莉安娜 lì lì ān nà lih lih an nah
Marcos 马科斯 mǎ kē sī maa ke sy
Laura 劳拉 láo lā lau lha
Antonio 安东尼奥 ān dōng ní ào an dong ni aw
Tatiana 塔蒂亚娜 tǎ dì yà nà taa dih yah nah
Paulo 保罗 bǎo luó bao luo
Vera 维拉 wéi lā wei lha
David 大卫 dà wèi dah wey
Patrícia 帕特里夏 pà tè lǐ xià pah teh lii shiah
Tiago 蒂亚戈 dì yà gē dih yah ge
Margarida 玛格丽塔 mǎ gé lì tǎ maa ger lih taa
Francisco 弗朗西斯科 fú lǎng xī sī kē fwu laang shi sy ke
Adriana 阿德里安娜 ā dé lǐ ān nà a der lii an nah
Duarte 杜阿尔特 dù ā ěr tè duh a eel teh
Carol 卡萝 kǎ luó kaa luo
Rodrigo 罗德里戈 luó dé lǐ gē luo der lii ge
Filipa 菲利帕 fēi lì pà fei lih pah
Lucas 卢卡斯 lú kǎ sī lu kaa sy
Daniela 丹妮拉 dān nī lā dan nhi lha
Leandro 莱安德罗 lái ān dé luó lai an der luo
Jéssica 杰西卡 jié xī kǎ jye shi kaa
Jorge 豪尔赫 háo ěr hè haur eel heh
Lara 劳拉 láo lā lau lha
Nils 尼尔斯 ní ěr sī ni eel sy
Andreia 安德烈娅 ān dé liè yà an der lieh yah
Sourik 苏里克 sū lǐ kè sū lǐ kè

Most common celebrity names in Chinese

Speaking about your hobbies and interests is a great way to start a conversation in Chinese with someone you’ve just met. But how do you talk about your favorite singer, actor, politician or sports player in Chinese if you don’t know how to say their names? Fortunately, transliterating celebrity names is quite easy — you’ll get the hang of it very quickly!

English Chinese Pinyin Pronunciation
Adele 阿黛尔 ā dài ěr a day eel
Angelina Jolie 安吉丽娜·朱莉 ān jí lì nà · zhū lì an jyi lih nah · ju lih
Anne Hathaway 安妮·海瑟薇 ān nī · hǎi sè wēi an nhi · hae seh uei
Anthony Fauci 安东尼·福奇 ān dōng ní · fú qí an dong ni · fwu chyi
Ariana Grande 爱莉安娜·格兰德 ài lì ān nà · gé lán dé ay lih an nah · ger lan der
Barack Obama 贝拉克·奥巴马 bèi lā kè · ào bā mǎ bey lha keh · aw ba maa
Ben Affleck 本·阿弗莱克 běn · ā fú lái kè been · a fwu lai keh
Benedict Cumberbatch 本尼迪克特·康伯巴奇 běn ní dí kè tè · kāng bó bā qí been ni dyi keh teh · kang bor ba chyi
Beyoncé 碧昂丝 bì áng sī bih arng sy
Bill Gates 比尔·盖茨 bǐ ěr · gài cí bǐ ěr · gài cí
Billie Eilish 比莉·艾利什 bǐ lì · ài lì shí bii lih · ay lih shyr
Boris Johnson 鲍里斯·约翰逊 bào lǐ sī · yuē hàn xùn baw lii sy · iue hann shiunn
Brad Pitt 布拉德·皮特 bù lā dé · pí tè buh lha der · pyi teh
Britney Spears 布兰妮·斯皮尔斯 bù lán nī · sī pí ěr sī buh lan nhi · sy pyi eel sy
Christiano Ronaldo 克里斯蒂亚诺·罗纳尔多 kè lǐ sī dì yà nuò · luó nà ěr duō keh lii sy dih yah nuoh · luo nah eel duo
David Beckham 大卫·贝克汉姆 dà wèi · bèi kè hàn mǔ dah wey · bey keh hann muu
Demi Lavato 黛米·洛瓦托 dài mǐ · luò wǎ tuō day mii · luoh waa tuo
Donald Trump 唐纳德·特朗普 táng nà dé · tè lǎng pǔ tarng nah der · teh laang puu
Dwayne Johnson 道恩·强森 dào ēn · qiáng sēn daw en · chyang sen
Elon Musk 埃隆·马斯克 āi lóng · mǎ sī kè ai long · maa sy keh
Emma Stone 艾玛·斯通 ài mǎ · sī tōng ay maa · sy tong
Emma Watson 艾玛·沃特森 ài mǎ · wò tè sēn ay maa · woh teh sen
George Clooney 乔治·克鲁尼 qiáo zhì · kè lǔ ní chyau jyh · keh luu ni
Hugh Jackman 休·杰克曼 xiū · jié kè màn shiou · jye keh mann
Jeff Bezos 杰夫·贝索斯 jié fū · bèi suǒ sī jye fu · bey suoo sy
Jennifer Aniston 詹妮弗·安妮斯顿 zhān nī fú · ān nī sī dùn jan nhi fwu · an nhi sy duenn
Jennifer Lopez 詹妮弗·洛佩兹 zhān nī fú · luò pèi zī jan nhi fwu · luoh pey tzy
Joe Biden 乔·拜登 qiáo · bài dēng chyau · bay deng
Johnny Depp 约翰尼·德普 yuē hàn ní · dé pǔ iue hann ni · der puu
Justin Bieber 贾斯汀·比伯 jiǎ sī tīng · bǐ bó jea sy ting · bii bor
Justin Timberlake 贾斯汀·汀布莱克 jiǎ sī tīng · tīng bù lái kè jea sy ting · ting buh lai keh
Kamala Harris 卡玛拉·哈里斯 kǎ mǎ lā · hā lǐ sī kaa maa lha · ha lii sy
Kate Perry 凯蒂·佩里 kǎi dì · pèi lǐ kae dih · pey lii
Kanye West 坎耶·维斯特 kǎn yé · wéi sī tè kaan ye · wei sy teh
Kim Kardashian 金·卡戴珊 jīn · kǎ dài shān jin · kaa day shan
Kylie Jenner 凯莉·詹娜 kǎi lì · zhān nà kae lih · jan nah
LeBron James 勒布朗·詹姆斯 lè bù lǎng · zhān mǔ sī leh buh laang · jan muu sy
Leo Messi 里奥·梅西 lǐ ào · méi xī lii aw · mei shi
Leonardo DiCaprio 莱昂纳多·迪卡普里奥 lái áng nà duō · dí kǎ pǔ lǐ ào lai arng nah duo · dyi kaa puu lii aw
Mark Zuckerberg 马克·扎克伯格 mǎ kè · zhā kè bó gé maa keh · ja keh bor ger
Michael Jordan 迈克尔·乔丹 mài kè ěr · qiáo dān may keh eel · chyau dan
Mike Tyson 迈克·泰森 mài kè · tài sēn may keh · tay sen
Neymar 内马尔 nèi mǎ ěr ney maa eel
Nicole Kidman 妮可·基德曼 nī kě · jī dé màn nhi kee · ji der mann
Oprah Winfrey 奥普拉·温弗瑞 ào pǔ lā · wēn fú ruì aw puu lha · uen fwu ruey
Rihanna 蕾哈娜 lěi hā nà leei ha nah
Robert Downey Jr. 小罗伯特·唐尼 xiǎo luó bó tè · táng ní sheau luo bor teh · tarng ni
Roger Federer 罗杰·费德勒 luó jié · fèi dé lè luo jye · fey der leh
Scarlett Johanssen 斯嘉丽·约翰逊 sī jiā lì · yuē hàn xùn sy jia lih · iue hann shiunn
Selena Gomez 赛琳娜·戈麦斯 sài lín nà · gē mài sī say lin nah · ge may sy
Sophie Marceau 苏菲·玛索 sū fēi · mǎ suǒ su fei · maa suoo
Stephen Hawking 斯蒂芬·霍金 sī dì fēn · huò jīn sy dih fen · huoh jin
Stephen Spielberg 史蒂文·斯皮尔伯格 shǐ dì wén · sī pí ěr bó gé shyy dih wen · sy pyi eel bor ger
Steve Jobs 史蒂夫·乔布斯 shǐ dì fū · qiáo bù sī shyy dih fu · chyau buh sy
Taylor Swift 泰勒·斯威夫特 tài lè · sī wēi fū tè tay leh · sy uei fu teh
Tom Brady 汤姆·布雷迪 tāng mǔ · bù léi dí tang muu · buh lei dyi
Tom Hanks 汤姆·汉克斯 tāng mǔ · hàn kè sī tang muu · hann keh sy
Usain Bolt 尤塞恩·博尔特 yóu sài ēn · bó ěr tè you say en · bor eel teh
Will Smith 威尔·史密斯 wēi ěr · shǐ mì sī uei eel · shyy mih sy

Understanding the basics of Chinese names

Understanding Chinese names is essential for appreciating Chinese culture. Chinese names carry deep meanings, so understanding them will help you understand your Chinese friends and colleagues on a much deeper level. Typically, a Chinese name consists of a family name (surname), followed by a given name, with the family name being of paramount importance as it connects individuals to their ancestral lineage.

Understanding the basics of Chinese names.

Chinese name components

These are the typical components of Chinese names:

Family name (surname)

The family name comes first in Chinese names and is usually one character, but can also be two on rare occasions. There are about a hundred common Chinese surnames, so you’ll quickly start recognizing the most common ones (more on that below!). The family name is inherited and shared among family members, indicating lineage and heritage.

Given name

Following the surname is the given name, which usually comprises one or two characters. Parents choose given names extremely carefully, as the characters often carry meaning or virtues they wish upon their child. For instance, names might reflect beauty, strength, intelligence or other desired personality traits. Unlike Western naming traditions, there’s a vast pool of existing names that can be used for given names, allowing for a higher degree of uniqueness and personalization.

Generational name

Some families also incorporate a generational name — a specific character shared by all siblings and cousins of the same generation. This practice, though not universal, highlights the collective identity of the family across generations.

Common Chinese family names

Compared to its vast population, China has a relatively low number of family names, which can be attributed to several factors. First, Chinese surnames are passed down patrilineally, so many families have had the same surname for generations, stemming from ancient clans and familial lines. Then, Confucian philosophy greatly emphasized the importance of family and ancestry in society, leading to the preservation of surnames.

So, learning just a few surnames can help you a great deal in identifying numerous names! Here is a ranked list of the 20 most common Chinese surnames:

Rank Chinese Pinyin Pronunciation
1 wáng wang
2 lii
3 zhāng jang
4 liú liou
5 chén chern
6 yáng yang
7 huáng hwang
8 zhào jaw
9 wu
10 zhōu jou
11 shyu
12 sūn suen
13 maa
14 zhū ju
15 hwu
16 guō guo
17 her
18 lín lin
19 gāo gau
20 luó luo

Common Chinese given names

Although many Chinese surnames overlap, you won’t meet two Chinese people with the exact same name that often. That’s because given names are chosen to reflect the parents’ varied hopes and aspirations for their children. Consequently, you’ll end up with unique names as each component of each Chinese character is carefully considered, including radicals.

With that said, here are some of the characters that most commonly make it onto Chinese given names:

English meaning Chinese name Pinyin Pronunciation Commonly associated gender
Great, mighty wěi woei Male
Bright míng ming Gender-neutral
Fragrance fāng fang Female
Hero or outstanding yīng ing Gender-neutral
Handsome or talented jùn jiunn Male
Thunder léi lei Male
Splendid or China huá hwa Gender-neutral
Outstanding jié jié Male
The crisp sound of hitting jade stones líng ling Female
Beautiful měi meei Female
Abundant fēng feng Gender-neutral
Vast hóng horng Male
Quiet or gentle jìng jinq Female
Mythical bird péng perng Male
Strong qiáng chyang Male
Coral shān shan Female
Wave tāo tau Gender-neutral
Elegant xiù shiow Female
Gorgeous yàn yann Female
Ambition zhì jyh Male
Surpass chāo chau Male
East dōng dong Gender-neutral
Splendor huī huei Male
Healthy jiàn jiann Male
Orchid lán lan Female
Peaceful níng ning Gender-neutral
Peaceful píng pyng Gender-neutral
Fine jade chyi Female
Auspicious ruì ruey Gender-neutral
Magnificent shuò shuoh Male
Heaven tiān tian Gender-neutral
Cultured wén wen Gender-neutral
Happy xīn shin Female
Dazzle 耀 yào yaw Male
Precious zhēn jen Female
Peace ān an Gender-neutral
Wave bo Male
Emerald cuì tsuey Female
Attain dar Male
Positivity ěr eel Gender-neutral
Beautiful and Noble 丽君 lì jūn lih jiun Female
Glory and Well 光利 guāng lì guang lih Male
Cultivate Ambition 培志 péi zhì peir jyh Male
Excellent Wisdom 佳慧 jiā huì jia huey Female
Cloud Flying 云飞 yún fēi yun fei Male
Morning Sunshine 晨曦 chén xī chern shi Gender-neutral
Clear and Bright 清昭 qīng zhāo ching jau Female
Bright Splendor 昭辉 zhāo huī jau huei Male
Flying Upwards 飞扬 fēi yáng fei yang Male
Bright Jade 明玉 míng yù ming yuh Female
Quiet and Pleasant 静怡 jìng yí jinq yi Female
Thunder 雷鸣 léi míng lei ming Male
Splendid and Noble 华君 huá jūn huah jiun Gender-neutral
Like the Dawn 若曦 ruò xī ruoh shi Female
Magnificent Abundance 硕丰 shuò fēng shuoh feng Male
Cultured and Pure 文清 wén qīng wen ching Gender-neutral
Scholarly and Elegant 香如 xiāng rú shiang ru Female
Elegant and wisdom 月华 yuè huá yueh hwa Gender-neutral
Majestic Might 振威 zhèn wēi jenn uei Male
Virtuous and Joyful 子欣 zǐ xīn tzyy shin Gender-neutral
Bright, Clear liàng lianq Male
Beautiful Jade 美琳 měi lín meei lin Female
Build Vastness 建宏 jiàn hóng jiann horng Male
Fragrant 芳芳 fāng fāng fang fang Female
Morning Rain 晓雨 xiǎo yǔ sheau yeu Gender-neutral
Accomplished chéng cherng Male
Magnolia 玉兰 yù lán yuh lan Female
Refined bīn bin Male
Sparkling 晶晶 jīng jīng jing jing Female
Triumphant kǎi kae Male
Orchid 兰兰 lán lán lan lan Female
Bright and Vast 明浩 míng hào ming haw Male
Merciful ru Female
Frost shuāng shuang Gender-neutral
Graceful 婷婷 tíng tíng tyng tyng Female
Greatness 伟伟 wěi wěi woei woei Male
Open-minded and Cultured 晓文 xiǎo wén sheau wen Gender-neutral
One Sail 一帆 yì fān i fan Male
Elegant and Noble 彦君 yàn jūn yann jiun Male
Delicate and Tinkling 玲玲 líng líng ling ling Female
Vast and Natural 浩然 hào rán haw ran Male
Happy and Content 欣然 xīn rán shin ran Gender-neutral
Candid lěi leei Male
Excellent and Fine 佳琪 jiā qí jia chyi Female
Thoughtful 思思 sī sī sy sy Female
Joyful huān huan Gender-neutral
Autumn Moon 秋月 qiū yuè chiou yueh Female
Ocean of Grace 泽洋 zé yáng tzer yang Male
Peaceful and Calm 宁宁 níng níng ning ning Female
Dawn’s Beauty 晓丽 xiǎo lì sheau lih Female
Light, Glory guāng guang Gender-neutral
Pleased, Happy yuè yueh Gender-neutral
Broad, Learned bor Male
Beautiful 丽丽 lì lì lih lih Female
Glory, Flourish róng rong Gender-neutral
Joyful, Happy 欣悦 xīn yuè shin yueh Female
Vast and Outstanding 浩杰 hào jié haw jye Male
Beautiful and Cultured 丽文 lì wén lih wen Female
Universe and Star 宇辰 yǔ chén yeu chern Male

How to pronounce Chinese names

Pronouncing Chinese names can be challenging for non-native speakers, but understanding the basics of Mandarin pronunciation can help. Here’s a guide to get you started:

Learn how to pronounce Chinese names.

Understanding pinyin

Understanding pinyin is the first step towards getting Chinese names right. This is the Romanization system of Chinese, which uses Roman letters to match the sounds of each Chinese character. Each syllable in pinyin roughly corresponds to a syllable in Mandarin Chinese and is composed of:

  • Initials: They’re always consonants and represent the beginning of a sound. Not all syllables need to have an initial.
  • Finals: They’re generally vowels, but can also include vowel combinations. They represent the ending sound. All syllables must have a final.
  • Tone marks: They indicate the tone in which the syllable should be pronounced.

The four tones

Mandarin Chinese is a tonal language, which means that the pitch or tone used when a word is spoken can change its meaning. There are four main tones and a neutral tone:

  1. First tone: High and level (¯). The tone is steady without rise or fall. Example: mā (妈) - mother.
  2. Second tone: Rising, from mid-level to high (´). It sounds somewhat like you’re asking a question. Example: má (麻) - numb.
  3. Third tone: Starts mid, dips down, then rises (ˇ). Often, it’s pronounced with a slight fall in casual speech. Example: mǎ (马) - horse
  4. Fourth tone: Starts high and ends low (`). It’s a sharp and clear drop in pitch. Example: mà (骂) means "to scold" or "to curse."
  5. Neutral tone: Light and quick, without a distinct pitch (_). It’s often used in particles, diminutives, and some single-syllable words to convey a specific meaning or grammatical function. Example: ma (吗) - (question particle).

Chinese name pronunciation tips

While reading the pinyin is massively helpful, some of it isn’t always intuitive for non-Chinese speakers. Especially if your native language is English, some of the syllables will be pronounced vastly differently. Here are some quick tips:

  • The c is pronounced like the ts in “bits.”
  • The q is pronounced like ch but with the tongue positioned further forward.
  • The x resembles sh but also requires the tongue to be more forward.
  • The zh is pronounced like the j in “jar.”
  • The ch is pronounced like the ch in “chop.”
  • The sh is pronounced like the sh in “shush.”
  • The r is pronounced somewhat like the s in “pleasure.”
  • The i in zi, ci, si sounds close to the i in “sir.”
  • The ü sound is similar to the German û or the French u. When ü follows j, q, x or y, it’s written simply as u.
  • Uan can be tricky. Think of combining u as in “flute” with an as in “can.”

Additionally, pay close attention to how native speakers pronounce their names. Also, don’t be afraid to ask for help or clarification from native speakers — most will be happy to help you get their names right!

How to choose a Chinese name

Whether you’re planning to visit China for a few weeks or are thinking about studying or working in the country for long, choosing a Chinese name is one of the first things you should do to integrate into society. Here’s a quick guide to help you choose your Chinese name:

Learning how to choose a Chinese name.

1. Pick an approach

There are two main approaches to choosing a Chinese name:

  • Phonetic matching: Find Chinese sounds similar to your own name. Most Western names already have a translation, which you can find above. If you choose to go this route, then simply scroll up to our list of the most common names, find yours and you’re done!
  • Meaningful translation: Choose a name based on qualities or elements you identify with. They may sound somewhat similar to your real name or not at all — it’s entirely up to you!

The phonetic matching approach is by far the fastest and most impersonal approach. If you’re planning to live or work in China long-term, going for a meaningful translation that more closely resembles a native Chinese name will be more impressive, as it’ll show that you’ve put some careful thought into your name — just how Chinese parents do with their children’s names.

2. Pick a surname

Chinese surnames are typically in one character. One suggestion is that you can just go with a surname that sounds closest to your own name. For example, if your last name is Jones, you can go with 周 (zhōu) as your surname.

3. Choose your given name

This is where you’ll have to spend some time thinking about what’s important to you. Ideally, you’ll want to combine characters that sound somewhat like your given name and signify values or adjectives that you identify with or would like to manifest for yourself. Of course, this is much easier said than done, but our list of the 100 most common Chinese names above is a great place to start.

4. Consult with native speakers

Asking native speakers for help can be a great way to find name ideas in Chinese. But, whether you decide to come up with the name entirely on your own or seek help, make sure to always confirm with a few native speakers before you settle into your new name. This will help you ensure that your name sounds as natural as possible and also confirm that there aren’t any other meanings or negative connotations that you hadn’t considered.

FAQs about Chinese names

How do you tell first names and last names in Chinese?

In Chinese names, the family name (surname) comes first, followed by the given name. The family name is usually just one syllable, while the given name is typically one or two syllables. For example, in the name "王小明" (wáng xiǎo míng), "王" (wáng) is the surname, and "小明" (xiǎo míng) is the given name.

Are Chinese names gendered?

Yes, Chinese names can be gendered, but not always explicitly. The characters used in given names often have connotations that are considered masculine or feminine. For instance, names containing characters like "芳" (fāng, meaning fragrant) are typically feminine, while names with characters like "刚" (gāng, meaning strong) are usually masculine. However, many names are unisex, depending on the characters used.

Do Chinese people have middle names?

Traditionally, Chinese people don’t have middle names the way Westerners do. The given name consists of one or two characters and is considered a single unit. However, in some families, there is a generational name component shared by all siblings and cousins of the same generation. Although not the same concept as a middle name, this is the closest thing that could resemble it in Chinese names.

Do Chinese women change their names after marriage?

No, Chinese women typically don’t change their surnames after marriage. The practice of keeping one’s maiden name is common and widely accepted in Chinese culture. This tradition emphasizes the importance of one’s lineage and family identity. Both men and women retain their given names and surnames throughout their lives, including after marriage.

It’s a pleasure to meet you!

We’ve covered hundreds of Western names in Chinese along with some of the most common Chinese names out there, so hopefully, you found yours on one of our lists! And if not, then you now have the tools to expertly create your very own Chinese name.

If you enjoyed this guide, make sure to check out the rest of our Chinese blog. We regularly publish tons of helpful guides, like mastering basic Chinese sentence structures and understanding the Chinese New Year.

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