by ethnic on January 25, 2014

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Birth Name: Ella Marija Lani Yelich-O’Connor

Place of Birth: Takapuna, Auckland, New Zealand

Date of Birth: 7 November, 1996

Ethnicity: Irish, Croatian, possibly English

Lorde is a Kiwi singer, songwriter, and record producer. She is the daughter of Vic O’Connor (Victor Peter Gerrard Andrew O’Connor) and poet Sonja Yelich (Sonja Marija Yelich). She stated in an interview on Vevo Lift that she is “a little bit Irish and a little bit Croatian”. She has also said that her maternal ancestry is Serbian. Lorde may also have some other ancestry, possibly English.

Her father was one of eight children in a religious Catholic family.

Lorde’s maternal grandfather is George Branko Yelich (the son of Branko Jelić/Yelich and Radmilla/Radmila Anrath, born Terezija Anrat). George was born in Vukovar, Općina Vukovar, Vukovar-Syrmia County, Croatia. George and his mother came to New Zealand, through Trieste, in June of 1949. Radmila was the daughter of Dragutin “Karl” Anrat and Wilhelmina “Vilma”. Lorde’s grandfather George was of the Orthodox Christian faith. Radmilla likely converted from Catholicism to Orthodoxy.

Lorde’s maternal grandmother is named Lana/Leilani Carol.

Sources: Article about some of Lorde’s background – http://www.fasterlouder.com.au

Genealogy of Lorde (focusing on her mother’s side) – https://www.geni.com

Photo by PrPhotos

{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

andrew December 18, 2017 at 3:04 pm

why should she necessarily have English ancestry? why not Scottish?

Blaise Perry December 17, 2017 at 7:03 am

I actually have some more information. I went through some City of Vukovar and NZ Immigration records and found some info about her ancestors.

Based on NZ immigration records – Ella’s grandfather – (George) Branko Yelich – came to New Zealand with his mother Radmilla Yelich (Anrath) via Trieste in June of 1949. Radmilla – a shoemaker from Vukovar – is stated as a widow.

Here is where it becomes interesting – Radmilla Yelich birth date is listed as April 16, 1915 – born in Vukovar. On this immigration record, both Radmilla and (George) Branko are listed as of Orthodox faith. Radmilla’s birth is actually registered in City of Vukovar Catholic records, under the name of Terezija Anrat. In City of Vukovar Marriage Index – her marriage is recorded under her new name – Radmilla. It appears that she changed her Catholic first name some time before her marriage – to a more Orthodox one. She married an Orthodox – Branko Jelić (born c. 1910) in 1940.

A year later, on September 23, 1941 – her son – (George) Branko Jelić was born – also in Vukovar.

P.S. – Sonja’s middle name is Marija.

Blaise Perry December 18, 2017 at 3:33 am

I don’t know where the rumors about her possible Serbian or Dalmatian descent came from, but both seem to be untrue. Her Croatian ancestors came from Slavonia.

I think that I may have found Branko Jelić’s parents’ marriage record, but until I don’t know it for sure, I can’t reveal anything.

Ella’s father full name is Victor Peter Gerrard Andrew O’Connor.

Fatmonkey August 25, 2017 at 4:35 pm

This Serbian article on the “Blic” newspaper site conveys the latest interview with Lorde (from 08/25/2017) in which she clarifies that her maternal ancestry is Serbian (she’s descended from the Serbs in Croatia). I gather most of the readers here would need assistance from Google Translate to read the article, though.


bablah August 25, 2017 at 4:54 pm

Je l’ možeš naći taj intervju za Metro? jesu to neke naše novine ili novozelandske?

neiltennant March 9, 2017 at 9:27 am

wow slavic people are so good looking

bablah February 9, 2017 at 6:28 pm

This is her uncle’s grave:

The inscription says:
Loving son of George Branko and son of Lana

Sooooo, Lana does sound Croatian, unlike Leilani, but I’m still not sure if she’s really Croatian.

andrew July 3, 2016 at 2:53 pm

this site states Lorde’s mother comes from a Dalmatian immigrant family. Vukovar is not in Dalmatia, though.


bablah July 3, 2016 at 3:21 pm

I agree. Her mother’s parents are said to be both immigrants from Croatia. The Leilani person is definitely not Croatian, so I think someone made a mistake somewhere.

neiltennant June 27, 2016 at 3:36 pm

I SWEAR THE FIRST TIME I SAW ROYALS on TV i thought that she is bosniak, croat or serbian

and i joked to a friend and said ”THERE IS MY BEST FRIEND CIRCIC”

circic is a good friend of mine who is bosniak

same look

bearboy November 24, 2016 at 7:32 pm

You’re funny @Neiltennant. sincerely @Bearboy

neiltennant February 10, 2017 at 11:47 am

i swear she looks the same

bearboy February 18, 2017 at 5:05 pm

You’re right! But on a side note the two of us should start a comedy duo. It could be called bear attendant because it’s a mixture of our birth names

LucarioCooper September 5, 2015 at 7:09 pm

She looks so evil.

xoxo November 4, 2015 at 7:29 am

Her music is evil as well.

M August 22, 2015 at 7:22 pm

She is so creepy.

She looks like she could be Michael Jackson’s daughter.

roman2886 December 27, 2014 at 4:21 am

Its very rare for new zealanders and australians too have more than 4 ethnicities most Aussies and New Zealanders have 4 ethnicities most Americans have more than 4 ethnicities 5 6 and 7 ethnicities.

noneofyourbusiness December 2, 2014 at 12:18 pm

It’s very hard to believe this girl is only 18. She always looks like she’s in her late 40s. Haggard looking bitch.

neiltennant February 18, 2014 at 4:47 pm

lorde is awesome

she had a number 1 hit on the hot 100 and now a second hit on the hot 100 with team

she reminds me of a friend, who is also of croatian descent

she has also dark hair and grey eyes

Blaise Perry February 3, 2014 at 12:06 pm

Her maternal great-grandmother’s last name is Anrath. That’s not Croatian surname, it’s German. Her mum is half Croatian just like her maternal grandfather.

follers February 3, 2014 at 3:56 pm

Radmila Anrath was born in Vukovar, Općina Vukovar, Vukovar-Syrmia County, Croatia, to Dragutin “Karl” Anrath and Wilhelmina “Vilma”.

Dragutin Anrath sounds Croatian.

Blaise Perry February 14, 2014 at 10:29 am

His first name Dragutin is Croatian, but his last name, Anrath isn’t Croatian. I live in Croatia and i’m partially Croatian so i know that.

follers February 14, 2014 at 12:09 pm

“Anrath” is an extremely rare surname, so I don’t know what the origin is. It may have multiple origins.

andrew July 3, 2016 at 2:46 pm

“Anrath” is clearly Germanic (as Wilhelmina name). After all Yugoslavia was under Austria-Hungary Empire.

Alice January 29, 2014 at 4:50 am

I can’t find anything other than information stating her father is an Irish New Zealander and mother a Coatian New Zealander. So it appears she just has Irish and Coatian ancestry.

follers January 29, 2014 at 4:53 am

Other ancestry sometimes isn’t stated, at least initially (for example, Jimmy Fallon).

Lorde’s maternal grandmother’s name was Leilani. I am not sure if a Croatian (immigrant?) woman would have this name, although anything is possible.

Her father could be fully Irish, though.

andrew January 29, 2014 at 9:44 am

no way that’s a croat name

J.J. January 28, 2014 at 4:49 pm

correction; irish is considered an anglo ethnicity, so it should be listed as possibly other anglo

J.J. January 26, 2014 at 5:40 pm

correction; her eyes are grey

J.J. January 25, 2014 at 11:41 pm

correction; her eyes are grey (light blue) and her hair is dark brown (brunette)

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