Croatian Culture

Naming

Primary Author
Chara Scroope,
  • The traditional Croatian naming convention follows the 'Eastern name order', whereby the family name comes before the first name (e.g. KAČIĆ Ivan). However, many use the 'Western name order' (first name followed by family name) in different contexts and countries. 
  • It is common for surnames to have the suffix ‘-ić’. Some family names may have the anglicised form of the suffix, which is ‘-ich’.
  • Family names are typically passed down the patrilineal line, with wives often taking their husband’s family name upon marriage. Some may add their husband’s name to their own. For example, if ALIĆ Branka married KAČIĆ Ivan, she may be KAČIĆ Branka or ALIĆ-KAČIĆ Branka.
  • Many Croatians have a name that corresponds to a saint. These names have an associated date when the respective saint’s day is celebrated. The names that are celebrated on a certain saint’s day are all the names that relate to the respective name and all derivative names (e.g. for Saint Nicolas, people with the name Nicola, Nicole, Nick, etc. will celebrate).

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