Explore the Family Name Koenig

The meaning of Koenig

1. German (mainly König) and Jewish (Ashkenazic; also König): from Middle High German künic, German König ‘king’, hence a German nickname for a servant or retainer of a king (for example, a farmer on a royal demesne), or alternatively a status name for the head of a craftmen’s guild, or a society of sharpshooters or minstrels. As a Jewish surname, it is artificial, one of several such Ashkenazic names based on European titles of nobility or royalty. The surname Koenig is also found in France (Alsace and Lorraine) and Poland. In eastern Germany the surname König is in part a Germanized form (translation into German) of Sorbian Kral ‘king’. Similarly, in Czechia, Poland, Slovenia, and Croatia, it was often applied as a translation into German of Czech, Polish, Slovenian, and Croatian cognates Král (see Kral), Król (see Krol), and Kralj, respectively. Compare Konig. 2. In some cases also an American shortened form of the compound artificial Jewish names of which Koenig is the first element, as for example Koenigfest. Some characteristic forenames: German Kurt, Otto, Hans, Erwin, Dieter, Frieda, Monika, Reinhard, Egon, Fritz, Heinz, Wilhelm.

Dictionary of American Family Names, 2nd edition, © Oxford University Press, 2022.

How common is the last name Koenig in the United States?

Based on data from the Decennial U.S. Census, the popularity of the surname Koenig has seen slight fluctuations over time. In 2000, it was ranked 1527 in terms of popularity, with a count of 21,606 instances and a proportion of 8.01 per 100k. By 2010, the rank had dropped to 1592, signifying a decrease in popularity by 4.26%. However, the overall count of individuals bearing the Koenig surname increased to 22,499, leading to a growth rate of 4.13%. The proportion per 100k also decreased slightly by 4.74% to 7.63.

Proportion per 100k8.017.63-4.74%

Race and Ethnicity of people with the last name Koenig

Regarding the ethnic identity associated with the surname Koenig, the Decennial U.S. Census shows that most individuals identifying with this name are predominantly of White ethnicity. In 2000, 96.04% identified as White, though this number fell slightly to 94.87% in 2010, representing a change of -1.22%. Meanwhile, those identifying as Hispanic saw a significant increase of 40.62%, moving from 1.60% to 2.25% between 2000 and 2010. Additionally, there were minor increases within the Asian/Pacific Islander, Black, and American Indian and Alaskan Native categories, while the percentage of individuals identifying with two or more races increased from 0.91% to 1.22%.

Two or More Races0.91%1.22%34.07%
Asian/Pacific Islander0.56%0.66%17.86%
American Indian and Alaskan Native0.63%0.65%3.17%

Koenig ancestry composition

23andMe computes an ancestry breakdown for each customer. People may have ancestry from just one population or they may have ancestry from several populations. The most commonly-observed ancestry found in people with the surname Koenig is French & German, which comprises 38.1% of all ancestry found in people with the surname. The next two most common ancestries are British & Irish (31.0%) and Eastern European (8.3%). Additional ancestries include Ashkenazi Jewish, Scandinavian, Italian, Spanish & Portuguese, and Indigenous American.

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French & German38.1%
British & Irish31.0%
Eastern European8.3%

Possible origins of the surname Koenig

Your DNA provides clues about where your recent ancestors may have lived. Having many distant relatives in the same location suggests that you may all share common ancestry there. Locations with many distant relatives can also be places where people have migrated recently, such as large cities. If a large number of individuals who share your surname have distant relatives in a specific area, it could indicate a connection between your surname and that location, stemming from either recent ancestral ties or migration.

Based on 23andMe data, people with last name Koenig have recent ancestry locations in United Kingdom and Ireland.

RECENT ANCESTRY LocationPercentage
Greater London, United Kingdom71.00%
Glasgow City, United Kingdom70.80%
Merseyside, United Kingdom70.70%
Greater Manchester, United Kingdom70.50%
West Midlands, United Kingdom69.90%

What Koenig haplogroups can tell you

Haplogroups are genetic population groups that share a common ancestor on either your paternal or maternal line. These paternal and maternal haplogroups shed light on your genetic ancestry and help tell the story of your family.

The top paternal haplogroup of people with the surname Koenig is I-Z58, which is predominantly found among people with European ancestry. Haplogroup I-Z58 is descended from haplogroup I-M170. Other common haplogroups include R-L2 and R-U152, which are predominantly found among people with European and European ancestry. Other surnames with similar common haplogroups are: Engel, Schmidt, Fischer, Becker, Huber, Mueller, Hoffman, Schaefer, Haas, Weber.

The most common maternal haplogroups of people with Koenig surname are: H1, H, V. These most commonly trace back to individuals of European ancestry.

koenigPaternal Haplogroup Origins I-M170
Paternal Haplo Image

Your paternal lineage may be linked to Alexander Hamilton

Early in the morning on July 11, 1804, Aaron Burr (then Vice President of the United States) and Alexander Hamilton (founder of the U.S. Treasury) dueled on the New Jersey side of the Hudson River. This marked the culmination of a bitter personal and political rivalry between the two men. Alexander Hamilton died as a result of the duel, but his intellectual legacy survives in the founding documents of the nation he helped build. A piece of his genetic legacy survives as well: in the 21st century, genealogists documented the paternal haplogroups of dozens of Hamilton's living descendants and concluded that the Founding Father's paternal haplogroup was a branch of I-DF29.

Your maternal lineage may be linked to Marie Antoinette

Because it is so dominant in the general European population, haplogroup H also appears quite frequently in the continent's royal houses. Marie Antoinette, an Austrian Hapsburg who married into the French royal family, inherited the haplogroup from her maternal ancestors. So did Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, whose recorded genealogy traces his female line to Bavaria. Scientists also discovered that famed 16th century astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus traced his maternal lineages to haplogroup H.

Maternal Haplo Image

What do people with the surname Koenig have in common?

Spoiler alert: it's complicated. People with the same last name are usually no more genetically similar than a randomly sampled group of people from the same population. That said, people with the same surname are more likely to have similar ancestries than randomly sampled individuals. The reason is the tendency of people with similar cultural or geographical backgrounds to preferentially mate with one another. That's why people who share a surname may be more likely to share traits and tendencies in common than people within the general population. Check out the percentages below to see the prevalences of tastes, habits, and traits of people with your surname compared with prevalences among 23andMe users.



Chocolate Ice Cream

Prefers chocolate flavored ice cream over other flavors.

"Koenig" Surname 46.8%

23andMe Users 41.3%




When sounds made by others, like the sound of chewing or yawning, provoke strong emotional reactions in an individual.

"Koenig" Surname 22.8%

23andMe Users 27.9%



Sugary Drink

Drinks one or more sugary drinks per day.

"Koenig" Surname 20.3%

23andMe Users 21.1%




A severe headache characterized by intense pain, sensitivity to light and sound, and often accompanied by nausea and vomiting.

"Koenig" Surname 16.9%

23andMe Users 16.4%

Are health conditions linked to the last name Koenig?

The short answer is that, if there is an association between surname and health, it's usually more about your ancestry than your name. Individuals with a given surname are no more genetically similar than the general population but often have similar ancestries. The populations of people associated with those shared ancestries often have sets of genetic variations, also known as alleles, in common. Some of those alleles are associated with a greater likelihood of developing certain diseases.

Disease variant frequency by ancestry

Disease allele frequencies in populations associated with the surname Koenig are shown below. Important Note: not everyone with a disease allele will develop these health condition

Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Y402H variant

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most common cause of irreversible vision loss among older adults. The disease results in damage to the central part of the retina (the macula), impairing vision needed for reading, driving, or even recognizing faces. The 23andMe Health + Ancestry DNA test includes the two most common variants associated with an increased risk of developing the condition: the Y402H variant in the CFH gene and the A69S variant in the ARMS2 gene. Learn more about Age-Related Macular Degeneration

French & German 60.8%

23andMe Users 57.2%