Japanese Surnames

Japanese names are used in Japan and in Japanese communities throughout the world. Note that depending on the Japanese characters used these names can have many other meanings besides those listed here. See also about Japanese names.
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ABE (1)安倍Japanese
From Japanese (a) meaning "peace" and (be) meaning "multiple times".
ABE (2)安部Japanese
From Japanese (a) meaning "peace" and (be) meaning "part, section".
AKIYAMA秋山Japanese
From Japanese (aki) meaning "autumn" and (yama) meaning "mountain, hill".
FUJIMOTO藤本Japanese
From Japanese (fuji) meaning "wisteria" and (moto) meaning "base, root, origin".
FUJIOKA藤岡Japanese
From Japanese (fuji) meaning "wisteria" and (oka) meaning "ridge, hill".
FUJITA藤田Japanese
From Japanese (fuji) meaning "wisteria" and (ta) meaning "field".
FUKUI福井Japanese
Denoted a person who was from Fukui prefecture in Japan.
HAMASAKI浜崎Japanese
From Japanese (hama) meaning "beach, seashore" and (saki) meaning "cape, peninsula".
HASHIMOTO橋本Japanese
From Japanese (hashi) meaning "bridge" and (moto) meaning "base, root, origin".
HAYASHIJapanese
From Japanese (hayashi) meaning "forest".
HIMURA緋村Japanese
From Japanese (hi) meaning "scarlet, dark red" and (mura) meaning "town, village".
HISAKAWA久川Japanese
From Japanese (hisa) meaning "long time ago" and (kawa) meaning "river, stream".
HONDA本田Japanese
From Japanese (hon) meaning "root, origin, source" and (ta) meaning "field".
IKEDA池田Japanese
From Japanese (ike) meaning "pool, pond" and (ta) meaning "field".
INOUE井上Japanese
Means "above the well", from Japanese (i) meaning "well, mine shaft, pit", an unwritten possessive marker (no), and (ue) meaning "above, top, upper".
ISHIKAWA石川Japanese
From Japanese (ishi) meaning "stone" and (kawa) meaning "river, stream".
ITO伊藤Japanese
Variant transcription of ITOU.
ITOU伊藤Japanese
From Japanese (i) meaning "this" and (tou) meaning "wisteria". The final character may indicate a connection to the Fujiwara clan.
KATO加藤Japanese
Variant transcription of KATOU.
KATOU加藤Japanese
From Japanese (ka) meaning "add, increase" and (tou) meaning "wisteria". The latter character may indicate a connection to the Fujiwara clan.
KAWAGUCHI川口Japanese
Means "mouth of the river", from Japanese (kawa) meaning "river, stream" and (kuchi) meaning "mouth, entrance".
KIMURA木村Japanese
From Japanese (ki) meaning "tree, wood" and (mura) meaning "town, village".
KITAJapanese
From Japanese (kita) meaning "north".
KOBAYASHI小林Japanese
From Japanese (ko) meaning "small" and (hayashi) meaning "forest".
KOIZUMI小泉Japanese
From Japanese (ko) meaning "small" and (izumi) meaning "spring, fountain". A notable bearer of this name is Junichiro Koizumi (1942-), who was Prime Minister of Japan.
KUROSAWA黒澤Japanese
From Japanese (kuro) meaning "black" and (sawa) meaning "marsh". A notable bearer was Akira Kurosawa (1910-1998), a Japanese film director.
MAEDA前田Japanese
From Japanese (mae) meaning "front, forward" and (ta) meaning "field".
MAKI (1)Japanese
From Japanese (maki) meaning "shepherd, tend cattle".
MAKI (2)真木Japanese
From Japanese (ma) meaning "real, genuine" and (ki) meaning "tree".
MATSUMOTO松本Japanese
From one of the many places with this name in Japan, derived from Japanese (matsu) meaning "pine tree, fir tree" and (moto) meaning "base, root, origin".
MATSUOKA松岡Japanese
From Japanese (matsu) meaning "pine tree, fir tree" and (oka) meaning "ridge, hill".
MATSUSHITA松下Japanese
From Japanese (matsu) meaning "pine tree, fir tree" and (shita) meaning "under, below".
MINAMIJapanese
From Japanese (minami) meaning "south".
MIYAMOTO宮本Japanese
From Japanese (miya) meaning "temple, shrine, palace" and (moto) meaning "base, root, origin". A notable bearer is video game pioneer Shigeru Miyamoto (1952-).
MIZUSHIMA水島Japanese
From Japanese (mizu) meaning "water" and (shima) meaning "island".
MORIJapanese
From Japanese (mori) meaning "forest".
MOTOJapanese
From Japanese (moto) meaning "base, root, origin". More commonly it is the final character in Japanese surnames.
NAKAHARA中原Japanese
From Japanese (naka) meaning "middle" and (hara) meaning "field, plain".
NAKAJIMA中島Japanese
From Japanese (naka) meaning "middle" and (shima) meaning "island".
NAKAMURA中村Japanese
From Japanese (naka) meaning "middle" and (mura) meaning "town, village".
NAKANO中野Japanese
From Japanese (naka) meaning "middle" and (no) meaning "field, wilderness".
NAKASHIMA中島Japanese
Variant transcription of NAKAJIMA.
NISHIMURA西村Japanese
From Japanese 西 (nishi) meaning "west" and (mura) meaning "town, village".
OSHIRO大城Japanese
From Japanese (o) meaning "big, great" and (shiro) meaning "castle".
SAITO斎藤Japanese
Variant transcription of SAITOU.
SAITOU斎藤Japanese
From Japanese (sai) meaning "purification, worship" and (tou) meaning "wisteria". The latter character could indicate a connection to the Fujiwara clan.
SASAKI佐々木Japanese
From Japanese (sa) meaning "help, aid" (repeated, indicated by the iteration mark ) and (ki) meaning "tree, wood".
SATO佐藤Japanese
Variant transcription of SATOU.
SATOU佐藤Japanese
From Japanese (sa) meaning "help, aid" and (tou) meaning "wisteria". The final character might indicate a connection to the Fujiwara clan. This is the most common surname in Japan.
SHIMIZU清水Japanese
From Japanese (shi) meaning "clear, pure, clean" and (mizu) meaning "water".
SUZUKI鈴木Japanese
From Japanese (suzu) meaning "bell" and (ki) meaning "tree, wood". This is the second most common surname in Japan.
TACHIBANAJapanese
From Japanese (tachibana) meaning "orange, tangerine".
TAKAHASHI高橋Japanese
From Japanese (taka) meaning "tall, high" and (hashi) meaning "bridge".
TAKENAKA竹中Japanese
Means "dweller amongst bamboo", from Japanese (take) meaning "bamboo" and (naka) meaning "middle".
TANAKA田中Japanese
Means "dweller in the rice fields", from Japanese (ta) meaning "field, rice paddy" and (naka) meaning "middle".
TSUKUDAJapanese
From Japanese (tsukuda) meaning "cultivated rice field".
UEDA上田Japanese
From Japanese (ue) meaning "above, top, upper" and (ta) meaning "field, rice paddy".
UENO上野Japanese
From Japanese (ue) meaning "above, top, upper" and (no) meaning "field, wilderness".
WATANABE渡辺Japanese
From Japanese (wataru) meaning "cross, ferry" and (be) meaning "edge, side".
YAMADA山田Japanese
From Japanese (yama) meaning "mountain" and (ta) meaning "field, rice paddy".
YAMAGUCHI山口Japanese
From Japanese (yama) meaning "mountain" and (kuchi) meaning "mouth, entrance". Olympic figure-skating champion Kristi Yamaguchi (1971-) bears this name.
YAMAMOTO山本Japanese
From Japanese (yama) meaning "mountain" and (moto) meaning "base, root, origin".
YAMASAKI山崎Japanese
Variant transcription of YAMAZAKI.
YAMASHITA山下Japanese
From Japanese (yama) meaning "mountain" and (shita) meaning "under, below".
YAMAUCHI山内Japanese
From Japanese (yama) meaning "mountain" and (uchi) meaning "inside".
YAMAZAKI山崎Japanese
From Japanese (yama) meaning "mountain" and (saki) meaning "cape, peninsula".
YOSHIDA吉田Japanese
From Japanese (yoshi) meaning "lucky, good" and (ta) meaning "field, rice paddy".
YUKIMURA雪村Japanese
From Japanese (yuki) meaning "snow" and (mura) meaning "town, village".