[[quoteright:350: [[Film/YoungFrankenstein http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/youngfrankenstein2_6413.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:350:Just when you thought it couldn't get any scarier...]]

->'''Dr. Frank-N-Furter:''' Go on, Dr. Scott... or should I say, ''Dr. '''Von''' Scott?!''
->'''Brad:''' Just what exactly are you implying?
-->-- ''Film/TheRockyHorrorPictureShow''

Want to give an ambiguous character that extra bit of onomastic intrigue? Tack a "Von" on to their last name.

Technically, ''von'' is merely a German preposition which approximately means ''of'' or ''from'' which appears mostly in names of [[BlueBlood families that belong (or once belonged) to the nobility]]. To set themselves off from commoners with "von" in their names, German-speaking noble persons sometimes prefer the abbreviation "v.". The nobility was abolished as a privileged estate in 1918, since then "von" and titles of nobility like "Graf" (count) or "Ritter" (knight) are treated as mere parts of the name. Note that in German, ''Von'' is not capitalized unless the first name is missing (compare "Helga von Trope" and "Frau Von Trope"). A permanently capitalized "Von" is mostly English usage. Before the 20th century, it was quite common to translate "von" as "de" in French texts and German-speaking diplomats would sign that way under treaties (which explains why even today it's not uncommon to see Germanic names preceded by that particular Latin preposition).

Some German-speaking noble families have more elaborate particles before their name such as "von dem" (shortened form: "vom") or "von der" (both mean "of the"), others have "zu" or "zum" (roughly "at", which usually indicates the actual or former place of residence), some have "vom und zum". There are also both noble families which have "SURNAME von OTHER NAME" or "SURNAME zu PLACE NAME" (as usual, there are exceptions, such as names of the pattern "Meyer zu PLACE NAME" and e. g. the poet August Hoffmann von Fallersleben, who added "von Fallersleben" after his birthplace to distinguish himself from other writers called Hoffmann). And there are ones that combine "von" with "nobility indicators" from other languages such as with many surnames containing the slavic suffix "-ski" or "-sky" or Franco-German combinations as the noble Huguenot family ''von Arnauld de la Perière''.

At its most basic level, "von" merely exists as a marker of Germanic origin, high origin or both. However, character namers have seen fit to use the syllable to make two main branches of the Von Trope Family tree.

# Darker Von Trope: Often the Von implies sternness, skill at intrigue, [[AristocratsAreEvil power, autocracy, villainy, sadism]] or any of the other tropes that {{Those Wacky Nazi|s}} [[NaziNobleman Noblemen]] tend to inspire -- ironically, as the old nobility largely despised the Nazis as ''parvenus''. Less dark variations may include the particularly [[DarknessVonGothickName Gothic]] or the militaristic badass, especially those that are a riff on Otto von Bismarck (a classic MagnificentBastard) or Baron Manfred von Richthofen, The RedBaron. Sometimes the characters with the name do not have a Germanic origin at all.
# Lighter Von Trope: It is also used as more of a StockForeignName for a Germanic FunnyForeigner (especially {{Mad Scientist}}s), or for goofy characters for whom the aristocratic bearing of the name seems incongruous.

Naturally, there may be crossover between these two subsets.

When [[RealityEnsues the character just happens to have that as part of their family name]], with no particular cultural significance meant to be attached (though in countries with a long history of democracy, the elitist overtones of the prefix often cause it to be dropped), it's not this trope or any other one.

The Dutch equivalent, "van", may be used to imply the same categories, though "van" is a lot more, well, common (in both senses: "frequent" and "having ancestors who were commoners rather than nobility"). In America, a Dutch PreppyName is often a better shorthand to signify old money and "[[WhiteAngloSaxonProtestant WASPiness]]" than an actual Anglo-Saxon one would be.

A common misconception is that "von" should be pronounced with a voiced labiodental fricative, the usual sound of V in English. But the V is in most cases pronounced as a voiceless labiodental fricative in German, which is usually spelt F in English, so it is actually pronounced "fon".

The trope name is a pun on the von Trapp family, of ''Theatre/TheSoundOfMusic'' fame.

Can overlap with DarknessVonGothickname.



!!Darker Von Trope Examples:

[[folder: Anime and Manga]]
* Isaak Fernand von Kämpfer from ''LightNovel/TrinityBlood'' invented the [[NebulousEvilOrganisation Rosenkreuz Order]].
* Bermuda Von Vichtenstein from ''Manga/KatekyoHitmanReborn''. Not exactly evil, but he's still a [[KnightTemplar Vendice]] afterall.
* Kanae Von Rosewald from ''Manga/TokyoGhoul :Re''. The SoleSurvivor of a prominent German clan of Ghouls, he's a servant of the illustrious Tsukiyama family and a {{Yandere}} towards his beloved master, Shuu Tsukiyama. For all his {{Camp}} mannerisms, he proves to be a dangerous opponent when provoked.
* Rudolf Von Stroheim in ''Manga/JojosBizarreAdventure'', a proud Nazi soldier who's very convinced that anything from German is '''THE BEST IN THE WORLD'''. But nonetheless, he's also a heroic patriot who'll give his life for his country and recognizes the Pillar Men as a threat to the world, thus has no problems with teaming up with people from the Allied nations for that.
* Tanya Degurechaff from ''LightNovel/YoujoSenki'' earns the privilege of adding a "von" to her family name after rising to become one of the Twelve Knights of the Military College, signifying her ascension to minor nobility.

[[folder: Comic Books]]
* Baron Wolfgang von Strucker, the leader of Hydra in the Marvel Universe.
* Doctor Victor Von Doom. Franchise/MarvelUniverse, [[ComicBook/FantasticFour Reed Richards']] archenemy. Though he's actually UsefulNotes/{{Romani}} rather than German, and had little chance of being on the Almanac von Gotha.
* Baroness Paula Von Gunther, antagonist of ''Franchise/WonderWoman''. One of the few comic villains to make the leap to the TV show, in fact.
* Von Bach of DC's ''ComicBook/KingdomCome''. He's some kind of dictator and only speaks German.
* Baron von Blitzschlag, a Nazi scientist who's a kind of villainous NewOldFlame - had offscreen run ins with ''ComicBook/CaptainAmerica'' and other heroes. Currently acting as a scientific adviser to ''The Initiative'', working on such catastrophes as Cyborg Thor and [[CloningBlues repeatedly cloning a deceased member]].
* MadScientist Simon von Simon (and his unseen rival Sigmund von Sigmund) in ''Little Gloomy''.
* Hans von Hammer, protagonist of the Creator/DCComics feature ''ComicBook/EnemyAce''. He's portrayed more as a WorthyOpponent RedBaron kind of person, though.
* The UsefulNotes/WorldWarI serial ''ComicBook/GoldenEyesAndHerHeroBill'' has the antagonistic officer Hugo Von Schwatzenburg as the only named German in the entire comic.

[[folder: Film - Animated]]
* ''WesternAnimation/TheIncredibles'' mentions an old villain named [[AristocratsAreEvil Baron]] Von [[NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast Ruthless]].

[[folder: Film - Live Action]]
* Hunter Van Pelt, the EvilPoacher of ''Film/{{Jumanji}}''. While a real name in Dutch, it's an obvious pun on "Pelt".
* ''Film/TheRockyHorrorPictureShow'': "Go ahead, Dr. Scott...Or should I say Dr. VON Scott?" The line is indeed used in the stage version to reveal an unaccented Scott's Germanic, likely Nazi history. However, it makes much less sense in the movie where, from the start, he has a ThoseWackyNazis accent.
* One of the CorruptCorporateExecutive types seen in an early scene in ''Film/{{Aliens}}'' is named Van Leuwen.
* The von Krolock family, of ''Film/TheFearlessVampireKillers'' and ''Theatre/TanzDerVampire''.
* The name of Frankenstein is {{Retcon}}ned into von Frankenstein in Universal's third ''Frankenstein'' film, ''Film/SonOfFrankenstein''.
** And since ''Film/YoungFrankenstein'' is an AffectionateParody of that film in particular, as well as a pastiche of Frankenstein films in general, it adopts the same naming convention. The coffin seen in the page image belongs to Baron Beaufort von Frankenstein, the last legitimate holder of the title as he disowned his son Victor over the whole "perversion of science/irresponsibly playing God" incident, until his will passed it on to grandson Friedrick Frankenstein in the hopes that he could repair the family name.
** The last of the Frankenstein line in ''Film/Frankenstein1970'' is Baron Victor von Frankenstein.
** Averted in the original novel as the Frankensteins are Swiss, and in fact express pride in their country being a republic without nobles.
* General von Pinck, the German assassin in ''Film/TheAssassinationBureau''.
* Velvet von Ragnar, the CreepyCrossdresser played by Gene Simmons in ''Never Too Young to Die''.
* Captain Friedrich von Hecht - and his superior General von Kleber - in ''Film/HornetsNest''.
* Captain von Schoenvorts in ''Literature/TheLandThatTimeForgot''.
* Major von Hapen in ''Film/WhereEaglesDare''.
* Colonel von Luger in ''Film/TheGreatEscape''.
* The title character played by Music/FrankSinatra in ''Von Ryan's Express''. He is not a German at all, but an American POW who is apparently too cooperative with the Germans, which earns him the nickname. It turns out to be a subversion, as he was feigning cooperation to prepare for a mass escape.

[[folder: Literature]]
* Von Bork, the German spy whom Franchise/SherlockHolmes captures in ''His Last Bow''.
* The von Shrakenbergs from S.M. Stirling's ''Literature/TheDraka'' series.
* Sepp von [[LouisCypher Theofels]] from an ''Literature/ErastFandorin'' spinoff series.
* In the ''Literature/JamesBond'' books, we have the Nazi war criminals Graf Hugo von der Drache (aka Hugo Drax) from ''Literature/{{Moonraker}}'', von Richter from ''Literature/ColonelSun'', von Hammerstein from the short story "Literature/ForYourEyesOnly", Count von Glöda from ''Literature/{{Icebreaker}}'' and the Hitler-wannabe Max von Tarn from ''Literature/SeaFire''.
* Vladimir Von Dread in ''[[Literature/RachelGriffin The Unexpected Enlightenment of Rachel Griffin]]'', Prince of Bavaria, [[AbsurdlyPowerfulStudentCouncil President of the Knights of Walpurgis dueling club]].
* Baron Friedrich von Schoenvorts in ''Literature/TheLandThatTimeForgot''.
* Captain von Brauchitsch in ''Film/WhereEaglesDare''. The name is that of an actual family (one of Hitler's field marshals and a prominent race-car driver of the 1930s belonged to it), originally Slavic (Silesian, to be precise).
* There are many vons among the generals commanding the two Russian armies invading Germany in ''August, 1914'' by Creator/AleksandrSolzhenitsyn, causing the protagonist to wonder whose armies they really are. Ironically, the German army opposing them is led by a Huguenot, with a French name (but also a von): Herman von Francois.
* Eugen von Frenzel in ''Literature/ThePearlandtheCarnelian''. Given, that the book is set in 1934, it doubles as a NameToRunAwayFromReallyFast.
* ''Literature/{{Victoria}}'' has the neo-Nazi chieftain Leader von Braun, who might (by the sound of it) be related to the German rocket scientist--though protagonist John Rumford has some doubts about how legitimate his name really is. On the good side, there is Prince Michael of Prussia, referred to by his family name as Prince Michael von Hohenzollern.

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* ''Series/{{Blackadder}} Goes Forth'': George's idea for finding the German spy at the field hospital is to look for the guy whose name begins with "Von". It hasn't occurred to him that the spy might be using a pseudonym.
* Series/{{House}} refers to the man who ratted him out at college for cheating as "Dr. Von Lieberman" although the man's real surname is "Webber", because it "sounds much eviller". (Ironically, translated back into English the name comes out as "Goodman"...)
* Major-General Erich von Klinkerhoffen of ''Series/AlloAllo'' certainly falls on the sterner side of ThoseWackyNazis, while Colonel Kurt von Strohm is more jovial. (Which says something when you can say that about someone who threatens to have people shot.)

[[folder:Professional Wrestling]]
* Professional wrestlers Baron Von Raschke and [[Wrestling/VonErichFamily Fritz Von Erich]], serve as classic examples of the ForeignWrestlingHeel type. [[CharacterizationMarchesOn The Von Erich Family eventually lost the Teutonic/Nazi gimmick]]. Fritz's sons were the top {{Face}}s of World Class Championship Wrestling (and Kerry would continue the pure face act in the [[Wrestling/{{WWE}} WWF]]). Kerry's daughter, Lacey, played a {{Heel}} in Wrestling/{{TNA}}, though without the Nazi overtones; she's blonde, but otherwise not "Germanic." Instead, she was a member of Wrestling/TheBeautifulPeople, a team of {{Alpha Bitch}}es who thought they were better looking than everyone else.
* Hans von Doering, an evil German who worked in New Star Wrestling and WWC in his efforts to prove the inferiority of the Caribbean people. He's also shown up in Wrestling/AllJapanProWrestling.
* Jim Crockett Promotions Mid Atlantic Championship Wrestling brought us Nazi Diane von Hoffman. She would even go on tour ''in Germany'', though like the Von Erichs the Nazi part was phased out later in her career.

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* Erich and Karl Von Shrakenberg from ''TabletopGame/TechInfantry'', named as a ShoutOut to Stirling's characters.
* ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer}}''
** Used quite often for characters - especially nobles - from The Empire, which is unsurprising given that The Empire is based heavily on the Holy Roman Empire. Examples include Valmir von Raukov, Elector Count of Ostland, Isabella von Liebewitz, Elector Countess of Wissenland, and the mad engineer Hermann von Meinkopt, who invented the repeater handgun (getting in a bit of the "crazy German inventor" there too).
** A prominent bloodline of [[OurVampiresAreDifferent Vampires]] in ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer}}'' are the Von Carsteins, modelled on the {{Dracula}} archetype and living in [[NoCommunitiesWereHarmed an analogue for]] the Black Forest.
** Van examples would include the Chaos Sorcerer Egrimm van Horstmann and the infamous Witch Hunter Johann Van Hal (and his equally infamous ancestors). Van is also used in some Marienburger names to give them a more Dutch feel than the rest of the Empire's German, given that Marienburg is a mercantile free city on the Empire's Northwestern coast very reminiscent of the medieval Netherlands.
* TabletopGame/{{Ravenloft}} is home to Strahd von Zarovich, D&D's most infamous vampire, as well as other examples such as Dr. Rudolph van Richten and Urik von Kharkov.

* The inhabitants of the [[HauntedCastle vampire infested castle]] from Theatre/TanzDerVampire, [[AristocratsAreEvil Count]] Von Krolock and his son Herbert.

[[folder: Video Games]]
* The [[BigScrewedUpFamily Van Graff family]] of VideoGame/FalloutNewVegas are a New Reno-based [[TheMafia crime family]] that are known to frequently butt heads with the [[TheFederation New California Republic]] and make deals with more-than-questionable groups such as [[TheEmpire Caesar's Legion]] [[PragmaticVillainy (although they do later betray them since that nets them a bigger profit)]].
* Von Kaiser of ''VideoGame/PunchOut'', a stereotypical UsefulNotes/WorldWarI-era German aristocrat and apparently a military academy boxing instructor. This still doesn't change the fact that after years of fighting, he has only made it to or has just dropped down to the number two place in the WVBA Minor Circuit. With a record of 23-13. One suspects he's 23-1 against Glass Joe and 0-12 against anyone else.
* Von Bolt from ''Advance Wars''. The series has a habit of the BigBad having a German name (his predecessor being 'Sturm').
* Ludwig von Koopa from ''VideoGame/SuperMarioBros3'' and later games. He even has [[EinsteinHair Beethoven Hair]].
** And Magnus Von Grapple from the second ''VideoGame/PaperMario'' game.
* Werner Von Croy of the ''Franchise/TombRaider'' series (the old-school games, at least).
* Chancellor Cole from ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaSpiritTracks'' is known as Minister Von Glaiss in German localisations of the game. Should be easy why he belongs here, he kills Princess Zelda and revives the demon king Malladus using her body.
* Elzam von Branstein, and probably his father Maier von Branstein, from ''VideoGame/SuperRobotWars''. (Both are written as V. Branstein, but Elzam at least is confirmed to be "von".) They're merely {{Anti Villain}}s, so they don't possess all the dark traits of this trope, but it allows Elzam to be an {{Expy}} of both the Red Baron and the [[Anime/MobileSuitGundam Red Comet]]. Raidiese F. Branstein ditched the "von" to distance himself from his family.
* Baron von [[NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast Doomkill]] from ''VideoGame/{{MARDEK}}'' combines DoomyDoomsOfDoom with LargeHam in the best way possible. Though, at one time in the past he ''was'' a serious threat to the world.
* Victor von Gerdenheim from ''VideoGame/{{Darkstalkers}}''.
* Hans von Groebel and his brother Kurt/Walther of VideoGame/CodenamePanzers apply as darker Von Tropes, if only because they're in [[ThoseWackyNazis German uniforms]] and the setting is WWII.
* Von Frog II from the ''VideoGame/{{Something}}'' series. He's a MadScientist who is the guardian of the Chateau du Eau and attacks the Mountain Bear village in Something Else.
* ''VideoGame/{{Belladonna}}'' takes place entirely in the home of Doctor Wolfram von Trauerschloss
* Helga von Schabbs, the BigBad from ''VideoGame/WolfensteinTheOldBlood''.
* Professor Ludwig von Tökkentäkker, the RepulsiveRingmaster of ''VideoGame/CarnEvil''.

[[folder: Visual Novels]]
* The German-born Manfred von Karma of the ''Franchise/AceAttorney'' series, a ruthless AmoralAttorney (a prosecutor, in this case). His daughter, Franziska von Karma (whose name means "free of bad karma"), has less of the evil, but certainly the name seems to fit the stern lady with a [[WhipItGood whip]].

[[folder: Web Comics]]
* ''Webcomic/GirlGenius''
** Von Pinn. First encountered as nanny to the children on Castle Wulfenbach, then later revealed to be an ancient construct created specifically to protect the Heterodyne heirs and "keep them safe". She's TheBaroness to anyone who threatens her charges.
** The Wulfenbach family never uses "von" in canon, but a lot of fans seem to use it for them outside the comic, largely due to the existence of this trope. The fact that they ''don't'' use it is likely related to the contempt the Baron has for the nobility's "rules". [[note]] The Wulfenbachs were a low-ranking family, and The Baron was, technically, ineligible to inherit the title according to those rules.[[/note]]
* When creating a villain for ''[[Webcomic/{{Starslip}} Starslip Crisis]]'' Kris Straub stated he was trying to come up with the most evil-sounding name imaginable. A reader pointed out that "Archcount Obdrath Lucifuge" could benefit from this trope, Straub publicly announced "why didn't I think of that?", and the name was immediately changed ([[{{Retcon}} retroactively]] to Obdrath von Lucifuge's first appearance).

[[folder: Web Original]]
* Website/GaiaOnline's Von Helson family, an aristocratic family that happens to consist entirely of vampires. Vladmir (and later Zhivago) are both major antagonists throughout the storyline. The Von Helson were also villainous for a while, but have undergone some VillainDecay in recent years (lampshaded in a recent mini comic). Ian and Louie are subversions. Ian is a lovable goofball who runs a costume shop with his talking cat, and Louie is a nice guy who just happens to be King of the Vampires, [[IHateYouVampireDad hates his dad]], and works at the local Formalwear shop.
* Houses Von Jeggett, Von Kruger, and Von Hastur from ''[[Literature/TheTaleOfGavenMorren The Tale Of The Exile]]''.

!!Lighter Von Trope Examples:

[[folder: Anime and Manga]]
* The Ten Noble Families in the anime ''LightNovel/KyoKaraMaoh'' all have 'von' in their names even if the rest of the name isn't Germanic at all. ''Von'' Bielefeld, ''Von'' Wincott, etc. etc. This is probably because Shin Makoku was heavily European based.
* Oktavia von Seckendorff, [[spoiler:Sayaka's witch form,]] in ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica''.
* Klaus Heinz von dem Eberbach in ''Manga/FromEroicaWithLove''.
* In the "Junk Car" episode of ''Anime/SpeedRacer'' dub, the race is held by a Baron Von Vondevon... who has a long-lost daughter Yvonne Von Vondevon.
* Estonia's human name in ''WebComic/AxisPowersHetalia'' is Eduard von Bock. This was most likely done solely for the 'funny foreigner/eccentric scientist' angle, as in actuality it's not even Estonian.

[[folder: Comic Books]]
* ''ComicStrip/{{Peanuts}}'' featured the Van Pelt siblings, Lucy, Linus and Rerun. (There's no evident relationship to Van Pelt from ''Film/{{Jumanji}}'', or Scott Van Pelt of Creator/{{ESPN}}.) ''Peanuts'' creator Charles Schulz was from Minnesota, a U.S. state that has always had large German-American and Dutch-American populations. So Linus and Lucy's last name is probably just meant to mark them as "typical Midwesterners."
* HerrDoktor Bombastus Johannes Theophrastus Almagestus Wernher [[Creator/MontyPython von Ulm]] from ''ComicBook/DeCapeEtDeCrocs''.
* A French translation of a ''DonaldDuck'' comic has Donald try to call a jeweler by the PunnyName of van der Grosspierr (The French pronunciation of "van" sounds like "sells", making his name "sells big gems").

[[folder:Films -- Animation]]
* Victor Van Dort from ''WesternAnimation/CorpseBride''. He may possibly be Dutch.
* Vanellope Von Schweetz, a ''Sugar Rush'' would-be racer, from ''Disney/WreckItRalph''. [[spoiler:Doubles as {{Foreshadowing}}, as she's secretly the princess of that game's world.]]

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* In ''Film/YoungFrankenstein'', Frederick's great-grandfather (whose son Victor originally created the Creature) was named Baron Beaufort Von Frankenstein.
* Lily Von [[YiddishAsASecondLanguage Shtupp]], in ''Film/BlazingSaddles''.
* In ''Film/AKnightsTale'', William competes under the name of Sir Ulrich von Liechtenstein, which contrasts not a bit with his bearing.
* In ''Film/BackToTheFuturePartIII'', Doc Brown mentions that his ancestors before World War I were the von Brauns. [[TruthInTelevision When the USA entered WWI,]] anti-German sentiment led many families to change their names. Cities with a prominent German heritage like Cincinnati even renamed some of their streets and changed local landmarks.
* Eric Von Zipper, the comical BadassBiker character from the '60s ''Beach Party'' movies.

* Long ago, a man approaches a Hollywood agent wanting to break into show business. He can sing. He can dance. He tells jokes. He's fabulous! "Fantastic!" says the agent. "What's your name, kid?" "Penis Van Lesbian," replies the young talent. "That's a terrible name!" exclaims the agent. We'll have to change it. How about we call you, 'Dick Van Dyke'?"

[[folder: Fan Works]]:
* In ''DarthWiki/TheGingerverse'', Dana and Konrad are siblings, and their last name is von Franke. It makes sense since they are German. Their cousin Lauri has this name as well.

[[folder: Literature]]
* As a RunningGag, many residents of Uberwald in ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' have the Von as part of their names, including Moist Von Lipwig, the werewolves Angua and Wolfgang Von Uberwald, and vampire photographer Otto Von Chriek. Justified in that these names are all denominators of origin.
** {{Lampshade|Hanging}}d in ''VideoGame/DiscworldNoir'', where the name "Count von Uberwald" ''isn't enough to identify someone'', except as "probably a vampire".
* Ralph von Wau Wau, a talking German Shepherd from Spider Robinson's ''Literature/CallahansCrosstimeSaloon'' stories. The character is originally from the works of Creator/PhilipJoseFarmer including "A Scarlet in Study" and "The Doge Whose Barque Was Worse Than His Bight".
* Evra Von from ''[[Literature/TheSagaofDarrenShan Cirque Du Freak]]''. He often corrects people that it's just Von.
* Literature/ErastFandorin's family name is a Russified version of "Von Dorn". Most of Boris Akunin's other novels feature characters who are [[TheVerse somehow connected to the same Von Dorn family]] and have names that are similarly descended from their name (Van Doren, De Dorn, Darnowski, etc.)
* The von Ulrichs, an [[JustifiedTrope aristocratic German]] family in Ken Follett's novel ''[[Literature/TheCenturyTrilogy Fall of Giants]]''. Although the story takes place during UsefulNotes/WorldWarI, Walter von Ulrich, being [[LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters one of the]] main protagonists, is portrayed in a quite personable way. Walter (working at that point in time as diplomat in UsefulNotes/{{London}}) points out that the Brits always erroneously capitalize the ''von'', when sending him letters.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* Baron Von Butcher was the head of the evil organization C.H.U.M.P. on ''Series/LancelotLinkSecretChimp''.
* Nina Van Horn on ''Series/JustShootMe''. It's not her real name (that would be Claire Noodleman); her agent got the last name from a porn star in his building.
* When [[Series/DoctorWho The Doctor]] goes to Germany, he usually presents identification that says he is 'Doctor von Wer', literally, 'Doctor of Who'. And no, it makes no more sense in German than it would in English. Pretty much ''any'' native speaker would immediately notice and wonder if this was supposed to be some kind of joke. (Germany does feature two or three places called ''Wehr'' he could hypothetically claim to be from, but the word isn't particularly related to "wer" and so the pun wouldn't work quite so easily anymore except perhaps as a GeniusBonus.)
* Serena van der Woodsen in ''Literature/GossipGirl'', whose family runs a Dutch shipping company dating back to the 18th century.
* ''Series/TheTwoRonnies'' gave us Otto van Dancer. Pronounce the v with a German f and you get the joke.
* The protagonist of ''Series/VanDerValk'' is quite difficult to place in this list, as while the series spent a lot of time dealing with the less salubrious side of FreestateAmsterdam, Van der Valk himself was unambiguously LawfulGood.
* Grace Van Pelt on ''Series/TheMentalist''.

[[folder:Pro Wrestling]]
* Wrestling/RobVanDam got his name from wrestler Ron Slinker, because of his resemblance to actor Jean-Claude Van Damme.
* Wrestling/ChristinaVonEerie's name isn't meant to invoke a "foreign" theme (though it does to [[Wrestling/{{AAA}} many]] [[Wrestling/{{CMLL}} viewers]]), as she is billed from [[PartsUnknown "Spook City, USA."]]
* Incongruous would go some way to describing Leah Von Dutch, who does have aspirations, or possibly delusions of nobility, but has a long way to go to get there. And she's Canadian, so wrong nationality.

[[folder:Puppet Shows]]
* Count Von Count, ''Series/SesameStreet'''s numerically-obsessed vampire.

* In ''Radio/TheJackBennyProgram'', Jack Benny's valet is Rochester Van Jones.

* Velma Von Tussle from ''Film/{{Hairspray}}''.

[[folder: Video Games]]
* Ebenezer von Clutch of ''[[Franchise/CrashBandicoot Crash Tag Team Racing]]''.
* [[OverlyLongName Almaz Von Almadine Adamant]] from ''VideoGame/Disgaea3AbsenceOfJustice''.
* In the InteractiveFiction game ''Enlisted'', the player character's last name is Van Dussen.
* The [=VanSalad=] family from ''VideoGame/TheCurseOfMonkeyIsland'', who are described as even homelier than the [[ThemeNaming Goodsoups]]. Also, Reginald Van Winslow from ''VideoGame/TalesOfMonkeyIsland''.
* Deitmar von Heinrichzimmerschneit from ''VideoGame/{{Borderlands 2}}'' is a NatureDocumentary director who hires the Vault Hunters to carry out his tasks while he sits back and provides director's commentary as it happens. Most of his tasks are for his own personal gain or amusement. Also, "Heinrichzimmerschneit" isn't his real name. [[OverlyLongName His real name is so long that you'd starve to death before you finished saying it]].
* The ''VideoGame/{{Skylanders}}'' franchise has Baron Von Shellshock, a talking crab with an inexplicable German accent.
* Germanic princess Hildegard von Krone from the ''VideoGame/SoulSeries''.
* Edward Chris von Muir from ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyIV''.
* Luke fon Fabre and his family from "VideoGame/TalesOfTheAbyss", one of the rare times this was used correctly.
* ''VideoGame/PinkPantherPassportToPeril'' has Von Schmarty, a GadgeteerGenius responsible for most of the inventions at camp Chilly Wa-Wa. He is however a friend of Pink and thus firmly on the side of the good guys.

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* Ilyasviel von Einzbern in ''VisualNovel/FateStayNight'' starts off as a villain but turns out to be slightly nicer than she looks. The rest of her family, however, may qualify...

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* The title character of the webcomic ''Webcomic/VanVonHunter''.
* Joey Von Krause from [[http://mortifer.smackjeeves.com Mortifer.]] [[spoiler:Except it turns out not to be his real name...]]
* Despite his [[NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast scary name]], [[Webcomic/GirlGenius Moloch Von Zinzer]] is a pretty normal guy.
** His first name is Biblical, referring to a deity with links to child sacrifice. Apparently his mother [[http://www.girlgeniusonline.com/comic.php?date=20120817#.VvHLdOKLTIU wasn't very literary]] and just picked it out the Bible. There hasn't been an explanation for his apparent noble roots, though.
** There's also been a [[http://www.girlgeniusonline.com/comic.php?date=20140411#.VvHMFeKLTIU brief appearance]] [[spoiler:before Martellus shot him in the face, anyway,]] from a [[SuperSoldier Jaeger]] named Rerich, with the original last name of Von Billeguether. Perhaps a noble house that ended up under the rule of the Heterodynes?

[[folder: Western Animation]]
* Ludwig Von Drake, WesternAnimation/DonaldDuck's uncle, and a goofy MadScientist. In German he becomes Primus von Quack.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'' has Melvin Van Horne, or Sideshow Mel, and Milhouse Van Houten.
* Scrooge [=McDuck=] is known in Danish as Joakim von And and in Swedish as Joakim von Anka, both meaning Joakim von Duck. We guess the translators weren't fluent in German, because it means that he is a duck from Duck. Hm... but then, "[=McDuck=]" would mean "son of Duck", so his original name isn't that much better.
* Velvet von Black from ''WesternAnimation/TheHauntedWorldofElSuperbeasto'', though it's unclear whether or not this is a stagename being that she's a stripper and all.
* The friendly-bully on ''WesternAnimation/PhineasAndFerb'' is named Buford Van Stomm.
* [[TheAhnold Jorgen Von Strangle]], in ''WesternAnimation/TheFairlyOddParents''.
* Professor Dinglehopper Von Schlemer, from ''WesternAnimation/AdventuresOfSonicTheHedgehog''.
* Dr. Ludwig von Scientist from ''WesternAnimation/JimmyTwoShoes''.
* Dr. Otto von Scratchansniff from ''WesternAnimation/{{Animaniacs}}''
* Two characters in ''WesternAnimation/{{Trollz}}'': Amethyst van der Troll (clearly a play on the Dutch name van der Meer, which makes her Dutch) and Onyx von Trollenberg, who is most likely from Germany or Austria.
* Several characters from ''Toys/MonsterHigh'': Spectra Vondergeist (German), Serena von Boo (German) and van Hellscream (a parody of the Dutch vampire slayer van Helsing), as well as his niece, who appears in Ghouls Rule.


[[folder: Real Life]]
%% Only real life intentional invocations with context are allowed. Otherwise, do not add real life examples.
* Creator/ErichVonStroheim, the "Man You LoveToHate" is the TropeMaker and TropeCodifier. He made a name for himself in the early 20th Century playing Prussian villains with a talent for sadism and the riding crop, and posed as a real-life aristocratic in exile in Hollywood. In actual fact, as Creator/OrsonWelles pointed out, Stroheim was born to a poor Jewish family, his father was a haberdasher and the Stroheims are not listed in the Almanac von Gotha (which is the list of aristocratic families). Stroheim willingly added "von" to his surname to make himself into a fake aristocrat. Indeed, Creator/JeanRenoir, the French director who directed him in ''Film/TheGrandIllusion'' noted that Stroheim spoke very bad German but somehow to American years passed himself off as the real thing.
* Creator/JosefVonSternberg was originally Josef Sternberg and like Stroheim born to a Jewish family and needless to say had little hope in actually being the aristocrat he wanted to pass himself off as. But likewise, found it expedient to put on the Prussian-shtick in America.
* Invoked with Creator/LarsVonTrier. The "von" part was a nickname he got in film school. He ultimately decided to keep the nickname to pay homage to Erich von Stroheim and Josef von Sternberg, who also added their "von" later in life.
* Music/LudwigVanBeethoven's name came from his Dutch ancestry, with a "van" as above which denoted his ancestors were farmers.[[note]]The name "Beethoven" itself literally translates to "beet fields."[[/note]] But living in Vienna he intentionally used the confusion with "von" to his advantage, letting people assume he was related to nobility. Eventually the truth came out in court during a custody dispute over his nephew. Beethoven was unable to demonstrate that he had any noble connections, meaning that his case could not be tried in the aristocratic Landrechte court, and got bumped down to the Vienna Magistrate, the court for commoners.