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PRONOUNCED: Wi:gla:f (Anglo-Saxon), VEEG-laf (German)
Meaning & History
A Germanic dithematic name, combining wig (fight, battle, war etc.) and laf (what or who is left). In the context of a typical dithematic name, where the two elements may be as independent in meaning as separate names, "laf" should probably be read as "one who remains, one who survives or endures".
In the epic poem Beowulf, Wiglaf son of Weohstan (weoh, with guttural H, is a variant pronunciation of wig) is a loyal thane and distant relative who succeeds Beowulf as king of the Geats.
Wiglaf was also the name of a king of Mercia in the early 9th Century. His son was Wigmund, and his grandson Wigstan.
A modern bearer of the name is the German satirist Wiglaf Droste.