Kate Monk's Onomastikon

(Dictionary of Names)

Korean Surnames

Koreans did not use surnames at first but Chinese-based family names became common among the upper and middle classes under the Go-Ryu dynasty. Until the C18th, only about half the population had surnames. There are only about 300 or 400 family names used in Korea of which Lee, Kim and Park are particularly common, accounting for almost half the population. People with the same surname are divided into branches often identified by a placename (about 280 in the Kim family and around 5 in most others) which could not intermarry until recently when the Korean Supreme Court made a ruling that people from the same clan or bon can marry outside Korea. Women do not take their husband's surname.

Ahn An Baik
Bang Byon Cha
Chae Chang Chi
Chin Cho Choe
Choi Chol Chong
Chou Chu Chun
Chung Chweh Gil
Gu Gwang Ha
Han Ho Hong
Hun Hung Hwang
Hyun I Jang
Jeon Jeong Jeung
Jo Jon Jong
Jung Kang Kim
Ko Koo Ku
Kwak Kwang Lee
Li Lim Ma
Mo Mok Moon
Nam Ngai Noh
Oh Pae Pak
Park Ra Rhee
Rheem Ri Rim
Ron Ryom Ryoo
Ryu San Seo
Seok Shim Shin
Shon Si Sin
Sinn So Son
Song Sook Suh
Suk Sun Sung
Tsai Wang Woo
Yang Yeo Yeon
Yi Yim Yoo
Yoon You Youj
Youn Yu Yun

This collection of names was compiled by Kate Monk and is ©1997, Kate Monk.

Copies may be made for personal use only.

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