Kristiansen or Christiansen

On Ole Kirk Kristiansen’s birth certificate, his surname is spelled with a K. In Ole Kirk Kristiansen’s day, however, it was common practice for the surname Kristiansen to be spelled with either Ch or K – and Ole Kirk Kristiansen did indeed use both versions, although mostly the Ch style. Both Godtfred Kirk Christiansen and his son, Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen – like Ole Kirk Kristiansen before them – were baptised Kristiansen, and Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen has always used this spelling. Godtfred Kirk Christiansen, on the other hand, used the Ch version all his life and was in fact popularly referred to as GKC. With the amendment of the Danish Act on Names in the 1980s, it became possible to change one’s surname – and Godtfred Kirk Christiansen did exactly that, formally adopting the name Christiansen. The reason the names Ole Kirk Kristiansen and Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen are written with a K is simply that it is how it is spelled in their birth certificates. Godtfred Kirk Christiansen, on the other hand, is spelled with Ch because he himself always used that form – and because he officially changed his name to Christiansen in the 1980s.