Scandinavian from Latin

Magnus Origin and Meaning

The name Magnus is a boy's name of Latin origin meaning "greatest".

Magnus is a Latin name, literally meaning "greatest," that has a Scandinavian feel. It dates back to Charlemagne being called Carolus Magnus, or Charles the Great. Norwegian king Magnus I, named after Charlemagne, introduced it to his culture, and thus Magnus was the name of six early kings of Norway and four of Sweden. It is still a highly popular name in Denmark and Norway.

Magnus, a powerful name with a commanding presence, is one of the newly unearthed ancient artifacts. It was picked for their sons by Will Ferrell (whose wife Viveca Paulin is Swedish), Kristy Swanson, and Elizabeth Banks—likely credited for this name's jump into the Top 1000 for the first time in 2013, as one of the year's fastest-rising names. Its fashionable s ending may keep it in popular use.

Magnus has made appearances as a vampire in Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles and as a character in Roald Dahl's Matilda. And for an extra ego boost, in Charles Dickens's The Pickwick Papers, there's the following dialogue:

"'Magnus is my name. It's rather a good name, I think, sir.'
'A very good name, indeed,' said Mr. Pickwick."

# 780 in the US

Magnus Rank in US Top 1000

# 44 on Nameberry

Magnus Rank in Nameberry Top 1000

Magnus Popularity

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Famous People Named Magnus

  • Magnus JohnsonAmerican politician
  • Magnus the GoodKing of Norway and Denmark
  • Magnus IIKing of Norway
  • Magnus BarefootKing of Norway
  • Magnus IVVI, Kings of Norway
  • Magnus IIV, Kings of Sweden
  • Magnus Brostrup LandstadNorwegian poet
  • (Sven) Magnus Øen CarlsenNorwegian chess champion
  • Magnus HirschfeldGerman physician
  • Magnus SchevingIcelandic actor and TV producer
  • Magnús Ver MagnússonIcelandic strongman
  • Magnus NormanSwedish tennis player
  • Magnusring name of Nicholas "Nick" Aldis, English pro wrestler
  • Magnus Gabriel De la GardieSwedish statesman and general
  • Magnus Hubert Twisleton Wykeham FiennesEnglish composer
  • Magnus PaajarviSwedish hockey player
  • Pompey Magnus aka Pompey the GreatRoman consul and general
  • Ore Magnus Lawson aka Lil' OAmerican rapper
  • Magnus Wollterson of actor Sven Wollter
  • Magnus Jackson Diehlson of actor John Diehl and singer Julie Christensen
  • Magnus Paulin Ferrell (b. 2004)son of actor Will Ferrell
  • Magnus Hart Swanson Eisler (b. 2007)son of actress Kristy Swanson and skater Lloyd Eisler
  • Magnus Mitchell Handelman (b. 2012)son of actress Elizabeth Banks
  • Magnus Hamilton Miller (b. 2012)son of singer Jennifer Nettles

Magnus in Pop Culture

  • Magnus "Maggie"character in 2005 movie "Hitch"
  • Magnus Banewarlock in Cassandra Clare's shadowhunters chronicles
  • Magnus Martinssoncharacter in the Wallander series
  • Magnuscharacter in the Vampire Chronicles by Anne Rice, Lestat's creator
  • "Magnus Powermouse" children's book by Dick King,Smith.
  • Dr. Magnus HoneyMiss Honey's father and Agatha Trunchbull's brother,in,law in book/movie "Matilda"
  • Dr. Helen Magnuscharacter in TV show "Sanctuary" (played by Amanda Tapping)
  • Magnusone of the dragon elders in game "Spyro the Dragon"
  • Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgardbook series
  • Magnus the Roguecharacter in the game "Minecraft Story Mode"
  • Magnus Pórssoncharacter in the Netflix Original, "Sense8"
  • Magnus Christensencharacter in Danish TV drama "Borgen"
  • Magnus Burnsidescharacter in the podcast "The Adventure Zone"
  • Jonah Magnuscharacter in the podcast "The Magnus Archives"