Parse name

The 'parse' endpoint takes a complete name and returns the first name, middle names and last name. Additionally the endpoint also returns the nickname, salutation, title and the most likely nationality of the given name.

This name parsing endpoint is very valuable for online businesses and services. It shortens forms, validates names and enriches existing customer database with their gender, salutation and nationality. We've compiled a list with name parsing use cases on a separate page.

Request parameters

Name Required Description Example
api_key required Your API key is required for every API call. Register for a free API key. 93d471ea85d1937e713e8aafffb32090
name required The complete name that you want to parse. Depending on your subscription you can query multiple names in a single request by making an array out of it.
Example: name[]=John Doe&name[]=Sarah Jones
John Smith
country_code optional If you know the country code associated with the name then you can provide it. By providing the country code the accuracy of the gender will be higher. The country code should be 2 characters according to the ISO 3166-2 country code specification. If the name parameter contains multiple names then the country_code should also be an array. DE
ip optional If you don't know the country code you can always provide an IP address. We convert the IP address to a country_code internally. If the name parameter contains multiple names then the ip should also be an array.
response_type optional The API returns JSON objects written in key/value pairs by default. If needed you can also get the response as a JSON array instead. object, array
gender_type optional Different type of kind can be used as a value for gender_formatted. By default the gender field returns "male" or "female". You can change the formatting from sex (default) to gender, marital, birth and slang. sex, gender, marital, birth, slang

Request URL

This is the easiest way to parse a name into it useful components. Each response is JSON encoded so easy to use. You can copy past the request URL in the address bar of your browser to see the response.

If you know the country code of the name then you can add the country code parameter. By specifying the country code the accuracy of the gender will increase. All endpoints use the ISO 3166-2 for country codes. Check our list of countries to see all supported country codes.

It is possible to query multiple names in a single request. You can send a maximum array of 25 names in the same request. For the rate limit this counts as a single request making it ideal of you want to process high volumes of names. If you also use the country_code then you have to make an array of that as well.[]=John%20Smith&name[]=Sarah%20Jones

Code examples

To make it extra easy to get started we prepared a few code examples. Choose a programming language below and copy the code to get started. Don't forget to replace the YOUR_KEY with the API key your API key.


function parseName($name){

    //Create variables (don't forget your API key).
    $api_key = "YOUR_KEY";
    $name = urlencode($name);
    $url = "".$api_key."&endpoint=parse&name=".$name;

    //Do some cURL magic here.
    $handle = curl_init();
    curl_setopt($handle, CURLOPT_URL, $url);
    curl_setopt($handle, CURLOPT_RETURNTRANSFER, true);
    $response = curl_exec($handle);
    if($response != false) {
        $output = json_decode($response, true);
    } else {
        return false;

    //Return the complete name object.
    return $output['data'][0]['name'];

//Parse a name into an object.
$object = parseName("John Smith");

//Print out the data.
print_r($object['firstname']); //Returns firstname object.
print_r($object['firstname']['name']); //Return the firstname "John".
print_r($object['firstname']['gender']); //Returns the gender: "m".
print_r($object['lastname']); //Returns firstname object.

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Response object

    results: 1,
    error: null,
    data: [
            salutation: {
                salutation: "Mr.",
                initials: "J.",
                lastname: "Smith"
            title: null,
            name: {
                nickname: null,
                firstname: {
                    name: "John",
                    name_ascii: "John",
                    validated: true,
                    gender: "m",
                    gender_formatted: "male",
                    unisex: false,
                    gender_deviation: 0,
                    country_code: "US",
                    country_certainty: 60,
                    country_rank: 3,
                    alternative_countries: {
                        GB: 13,
                        CA: 3
                middlenames: null,
                lastname: {
                    name: "Smith",
                    name_ascii: "Smith",
                    validated: true,
                    country_code: "US",
                    country_certainty: 62,
                    country_rank: 1,
                    alternative_countries: {
                        GB: 24,
                        CA: 3,
                        AU: 3
            country: {
                country_code: "US",
                country_certainty: 63,
                country_code_alpha: "USA",
                name: "United States",
                continent: "North America",
                demonym: "American",
                primary_language_code: "en",
                primary_language: "English",
                currency: "USD",
                alternative_countries: {
                    GB: 19,
                    CA: 3,
                    AU: 3

Response parameters

Most response parameters are self-explanatory. However, there are a few fields that need an additional explanation. These fields are listed in the table below. If you're looking for is a response parameter that is not in this list, please contact us and we'll add it to this list.

Name Type Description
validated boolean The validated key is a boolean indicating if a first name, middle name or last name exists in an official database. Most countries and their governments have great open data initiatives and provide official first names, gender and frequencies. For the first name and middle names the validated key is a boolean indicating if the name is also in the official database for the resulting country. If the validated key is 'false' then the name is derived from another country. It's still an existing name but we don't have the official database for that country. For the last name it means it has at least to occur two times in the resulting country.
gender enum The gender is always an "m" (male) or "f" (female). Our database holds 1.597.154 official first names and their gender received from governments. By providing the country_code in the request parameter the accuracy of the gender will be higher.
unisex boolean A unisex name is a given name that can be used by a person regardless of their gender.
gender_deviation integer The gender deviation is a percentage indication the change that the gender is the opposite as provided.
alternative_countries array Each name (first name, middle name or last name) has a country code. The country code is the most likely country where the name originates from. The alternative countries is an array that hold the 'second best' estimations. The values are the country certainty percentages (higher is more likely). After analyzing all names and countries the services makes a selects the most likely country where the complete name originates from.