In the World of Avatar, names are drawn from a wide variety of languages and sources. Although many names are transliterated into Chinese characters, the form of writing used in Avatar, most names are not Chinese, and are either derived from other languages or completely fictional.
The format of this list of name translations is: Name - Traditional Hanzi (simplified Hanzi if different) - Mandarin Pronunciation in Hanyu Pinyin/Pronunciation in other languages - English translation. Because many characters' names are never seen written on screen, and it is impossible to guess the correct characters to write a name without knowing its meaning, Chinese characters may not be given for all names.
- A note on East Asian names: Personal names in China and Korea are usually one or two characters chosen to have an auspicious meaning, while given names in Japanese can sometimes be three. Surnames always come before the given name; in China and Korea, they are almost always one character, but may be two in Japan.
- Readers should also note that the simplified characters in the translations on this page – the characters in brackets – are not used in the show. They are merely used as a reference for those unable to read traditional Chinese characters.
Avatar: The Last Airbender
- Aang:  – Peaceful soaring.
- Katara:  – Probably phonetic. Characters mean "block", "pagoda" and "pull".
- Sokka:  – Probably phonetic. Characters mean "inquire" and "block".
- Toph Beifong:  - Surname means "North region" and given name means "expanding hibiscus". In "Tales of Ba Sing Se", her name is written on the title card as , meaning "entrusted man", likely due to an error.
- Zuko:  – Resurrected rule. On his wanted poster, his name was written with the characters , meaning "ancestor robber". In Ursa's letter to Ikem, Zuko's name was written with the characters meaning "vertical high" with the second character being a variant of " ".
- Iroh:  – Probably phonetic. The first character means "Chinese mugwort", a type of flower used in a form of traditional Chinese medicine called moxibustion, which is not usually used to name males, and the second character is the name of a river in China.
- Appa:  – Characters mean "Cypress".
- Momo: 模模 - Transliteration of Japanese word "momo", meaning "peach"; used as a common pet name in Japan. Characters mean "imitate".
- Gyatso: རྒྱ་མཚོ། – Tibetan name meaning "ocean of wisdom".
- Pasang: (Tibetan) – Tibetan name meaning "born on Friday".
- Tashi: བཀྲ་སྷིས – Tibetan name meaning "good fortune/auspiciousness".
- Bumi:  – 'Bumi' means "earth" in Sanskrit, most Indian languages derived from Sanskrit, as well as in Indonesian and Malay. The Chinese characters used for transliteration mean "to spread rice".
- Chin:  – Qin was the surname of controversial emperor Qin Shi Huang, who unified China. It referred to the state he ruled prior to conquering the rest of China.
- Hong Lee (Zuko):  – Hong is a traditional Chinese surname meaning "vast" or "deluge"; Lee references the Confucian virtue li, meaning "propriety" or "ritual". He may be named for Li Hong, one of the series' early concept artists.
- Hong Mushi (Iroh):  – Hong is a traditional Chinese surname meaning "vast" or "deluge"; Mushi means "to want to become a scholar".
- Kyoshi:  – Japanese, meaning "empty child"; this was the pen name of the famous Japanese poet Takahama Kiyoshi.
- Long Feng: – Dragon Pheonix. In Chinese tradition, the dragon and phoenix represented the royal throne.
- Macmu-Ling – Named after Avatar writer Lauren MacMullan.
- Miyuki: – Common Japanese girl's name meaning "beautiful snow". Named after storyboard artist Miyuki Hoshikawa.
- Oh: 吳 - Korean: O - Oh (Wu in Chinese) is a common surname in Korea, referring to the ancient Kingdom of Wu in China. Named after animator Seung-Hyun Oh.
- Oma:  – Characters mean "obscure" and "carnelian".
- Oyaji: 親父 - Japanese informal term for "dad" or "old man". The first character is Chinese for "parent", with the second being a formal term of respect for an elderly man.
- Pao:  – Bao is a traditional Chinese surname meaning "To cover". It is a pun of the character (pāo), meaning to boil tea.
- Pong: – An abortive pun on the word ping-pong; originally, Aang was going to have another neighbor named Ping, who was cut from the script. The Chinese Characters for ping-pong are simply an onomatopoeia for the sound the ball makes.
- Pu-on Tim:  - Cantonese: pu on tim - Pu is a traditional Chinese surname meaning "beach"; On-Tim means "Increasing Peace". Named after Avatar writer Tim Hedrick.
- Sha-Mo: – Desert.
- Shu:  – Shu is a traditional Chinese surname meaning "relax".
- Song - Song is a common Chinese and Korean surname.
- The Boulder:  - Big rock.
- Xin Fu:  – Xin is a traditional Chinese surname meaning "bitter"; Fu means "wealth".
- Aunt Wu: - Wu is a Chinese surname meaning "sorceress" or "shaman".
- Yi Ming: - Probably phoenetic. Characters mean "bequeath" and "next".
- Yu:  - Yu is a common Chinese surname meaning "surplus".
- Yulduz: (Uzbek) - Yulduz is a feminine Uzbek name meaning "star".
- Chan (Fire Nation admiral): (Cantonese) – Chen/Chan is a very common Chinese surname referring to the ancient State of Chen in central China. Named after writer May Chan.
- Chan (Fire Nation blacksmith):  (Cantonese) – See above.
- Chan (teenager): (Cantonese) – See above. Also named after May Chan.
- Chey 濟 (济) (Korean: che) – To ferry; to help. Likely a reference to revolutionary Che Guevara.
- Chit Sang: (Cantonese: jit saang) – Named after writer May Chan's father. His name seems to be composed of the characters , meaning "victory" or "quick", and , meaning "gentleman".
- Ding: – Ding is a common Chinese surname meaning "robust" or "masculine".
- Ikem:  - Resolute and hard-working.
- Jeong Jeong:  – The sound of tinkling gems.
- Liang: - Liang is a common Chinese surname meaning "bridge" or "beam".
- Lu Ten:  – Gallop over a road.
- Mak: - Cantonese: mak - Mak (Mai in Mandarin) is a common Chinese surname meaning "wheat" or "barley".
- Mongke: – (Mongolian: möngke) - Mongolian name meaning eternal: Name of the fourth Great Khan of the Mongol Empire who conquered Iraq, Syria and Vietnam.
- Morishita: (Japanese) – Japanese surname meaning "below the forest", originally in reference to where the family lived.
- Ogodei: (Mongolian: ögedei) – Name of Genghis Khan's third son and second Great Khan of the Mongol Empire.
- Ozai:  – Carry proudly.
- Ran and Shaw: and – Ran means "burn" or "ignite" in Chinese. Shaw, more correctly "Shao", means "burn" or "braze". The characters can also be used together to mean "combustion", "flaming", or "kindle".
- Sozin:  – Revival and progress.
- Tom-Tom:  – Phonetic: characters mean "soup" or "hot water".
- Ursa:  – Phonetic: first character can mean "so" or "that", second character means "a beauty".
- Yeh-Lu: (Khitan: yelü) – The family name of Yelü Chucai, an adviser of Ogedei Khan.
- Pathik: पथिक – Hindi word meaning "traveler".
- Hei Bai:  – Black and white.
- La:  – Pull.
- Tui:  – Push.
- Wan Shi Tong:  – Hall of immeasurable (lit: ten thousand) knowledge; poetically, "he who knows ten thousand things".
The Legend of Korra
- Amon:  – Multiple meanings: most appropriate "to cover", "to deceive". Refers to the Egyptian god, Amon.
- Asami Sato: – Japanese: Asami is a female name meaning "hemp beauty". Sato is the most common Japanese surname.
- Bolin  – Characters mean "abundant" and "forest".
- Lin Beifong: Surname () means "north region". While it is unusual for her to have taken her mother's surname, it is not unprecedented; in Japan, for example, if a family had no male heir to carry on its name, it would sometimes adopt the daughter's son-in-law in order to ensure the survival of their name.
- Korra:  – From the name Cora, Celtic and Greek for "maiden". She is named after the dog of the owner of a hotel in Alberta, Canada.
- Mako: - Abbreviated version of the Japanese name Makoto, meaning "faithfulness" or "trust". He is named as a tribute to Mako Iwamatsu, Iroh's voice actor in the original series. The Chinese characters used to transliterate it mean "horse" and "high".
- Noatak: (Inuit: nautaag) – Inland river. Name of village in Alaska.
- Tenzin: བསྟན་འཛིན – Meaning "upholder of the Dharma" or "defender of the faith".
- Ginger - Likely named after Ginger Rogers, a popular American actress and dancer of the 1930s.
- Hiroshi Sato: (Japanese) – Hiroshi is a common male Japanese name with many meanings depending on the characters used. Sato (佐藤, Satō) is the most common Japanese surname.
- Kwong:  – Kwong is a Chinese surname.
- Lau Gan-Lan: – The characters of his name translate to "old" (often used as a title of respect for an older man) and "wild cabbage"; his name could therefore be translated as "Old Man Cabbage". Lau, written with different characters, is also a common Chinese surname.
- Saikhan: Сайхан – Mongolian word meaning "beautiful".
- Shiro Shinobi: (Japanese) – Shiro is a Japanese name that usually means "fourth child", though it can be written with a number of kanji. Shinobi (忍び) is a Japanese word that means "sneak", "thief", or "ninja".
- Baatar: Баатар – Mongolian word meaning "hero".
- Guo:  - Common Chinese surname meaning "city wall".
- Ryu: 류 – Ryu is one of four English transliterations of a rare Korean surname. He is named after animator Ki Hyun Ryu.
Air Nomads/Air Acolytes
- Otaku: オタク – Derogatory Japanese term referring to someone with an obsessive interest, usually in anime or manga.
- Pema: པདྨ་ – Tibetan name meaning "lotus flower".
- Rohan: रोहण – Saskrit name meaning "to ascend; to rise; to attain great heights". Named after Bryan Konietzko's Indian nephew.
The format of this list of bending art translations is: Bending Art: Traditional Hanzi (Simplified Hanzi if different) - Mandarin Pronunciation (in Hanyu Pinyin) - English translation.
- Airbending:  – Divine ability to halt air.
- Waterbending:  – Divine ability to halt water.
- Earthbending:  – Technique of moving earth.
- Firebending:  – Technique of manipulating fire.
Location and organization names
The format of this list of location translations is: Location: Traditional Hanzi (simplified Hanzi if different) - Mandarin Pronunciation (in Hanyu Pinyin) - English translation.
- Earth Kingdom:  – Literal
- Ba Sing Se:  – Eternally solid city.
- Cave of Two Lovers:  – Lover cave
- Chin Village:  – Name of an ancient state.
- Chaoyang Market:  - "Chaoyang" could be read to mean either "sunny" or "morning sun".
- Du'an Village:  - First character means birch-leaf pear or barrier, second means peace.
- Full Moon Bay:  – Literal
- Gan Jin: – Clean.
- Gaoling: – Tall tomb. Also the name of a county in Xi'an.
- Golden Phoenix Mountain:  - Literal.
- Kyoshi Island:  – Literal; see names section for translation of Kyoshi)
- Misty Palms Oasis:  - Literal.
- Omashu::  – Transliteration of word "Omashu", "chéng" means city.
- Senlin Village: – Forest Village.
- Serpent's Pass:  – Coiled Snake Pass.
- Seven Sun Temple:  - Name could also be read as "Seven Days Temple".
- Shuiji River:  - Name literally means "Sleeping Chicken River".
- Si Wong Desert:  – Desert of death.
- South Sea: – Literal
- Wan Shi Tong's Library:  – Literal; see names section for translation of Wan Shi Tong)
- Wen Wilderness:  - "Wen" could mean "culture" or "literature".
- Yu Dao:  – Jade Island.
- Zhang: – Dirty.
- Zaofu:  - Black Mound.
- Fire Nation:  – Raging Fire Nation.
- Fire Nation Capital:  – Imperial Capital City.
- Fire Nation Capital:  – Capital Island
- Dragonbone Catacombs:  - (literal)
- Ember Island:  – Literal
- Forgetful Valley:  – Forget Sorrows Valley.
- Jang Hui:'  – "Gray River" or "River of ash"
- Main article: United Republic
Businesses and organizations
- Ba Sing Se University:  – Literal
- Ba Sing Se Zoo:  – Happy Zoo.
- Dai Li: - The Dai Li's name has two meanings in Chinese, the first being literal. Dai ( ) means "to wear". Li ( ) is the cone shaped rain hat that farmers and fishermen wear in China, which look similar to the hats worn by Dai Li in the show. However, the same characters are also the name of a person, and it was from him the Dai Li were named. Lieutenant General Dai Li was a top Chinese government official during the first half of 20th century and one of the most feared men in China. He was, infamously, the leader of Chiang Kai-Shek's secret police and the paramilitary fascist Blue Shirt Society. The number of agents in his organization is said to have been over 50,000 at one point, and their assignments included surveillance, kidnapping, apprehension, and assassination. It was because of his "legacy" of oppression that the creators chose to name Ba Sing Se's secret police after him.
- Earthen Fire Refinery: – Literally "earth-fire company".
- Ember Island Theater:  – Literal
- Fancy Lady Day Spa:  – Literal
- Fire Ferrets: 
- Five-Seven-Five Society:  – Literal
- Green Blaze Inn:  – Literal
- Green Flame Inn:  – Literal
- Happy Traveler's Opera Troupe:  – Literal
- Jasmine Dragon:  – Literal
- Kwong's Cuisine:  – Literally "Mr. Kwong's Fine Food".
- Master Yu's Earthbending Academy:  – Master Yu's Renowned Earthbending Academy
- Metalbending Police Force:  – Republic City Police Force.
- Misty Palms Inn:  - Literal.
- Old Chen's Blacksmith Shop:  – Literal
- Order of the White Lotus: – White Lotus.
- Pao Family Tea House:  – Literal
- Sweet Aroma Tea House:  – Literal
- Tasty Hotpot Restaurant:  – Literal
- Yu Dao Grocery Store:  – Literal
- Zaofu Security Force:  - Literal