Etymology of country names

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Etymology of country names

Russia - The origin is unknown.

Australia - From the 'unknown southern land' (Latin terra australis incognita). The area was named by early European researchers who believed that the Australian mainland was much larger than they had so far discovered. Traveler Matthew Flinders (1774-1814), who first explored the Australian coast and made his map, used the term 'Australia' in his work.

Austria - Eastern Kingdom, for example, compare with modern German: Osterreich. In the 9th century, Austria was the easternmost territory of the Frankish Empire, as well as the border zone of German settlements with the Slavic land. Karl the Great called the country Ostmark ('eastern border area'). In the 11th century, the term Ostarrichi first appeared.

Azerbaijan - The land of fire (from fires on the surface of ancient oil basins) in Arabic is pronounced like Azerbaijan.

Aaland Islands - perch country

Albania - The land of the mountaineers. The root 'Alb' means 'white' or 'mountain'. It is assumed that the mountain tribes from modern-day Kosovo brought their mountain ethnonym to a narrow coastal plain. The domestic name Shqiperia means 'land of the eagle'. Perhaps the eagle was a tribal totem.

Algeria - From the name of the capital Algiers (Algiers), which is in French Alger, in Arabic - Al Jazair (islands).

Angola - From ngola, the title used by the monarch in the pre-colonial kingdom of Ndongo.

Andorra - The origin is unknown. Perhaps Iberian or Basque.

Argentina - From the lat. Argentum (silver). The merchants used the Argentine river Rio de la Plata (Silver River) to transport silver and other treasures from Peru. The Earth is downstream and has become known as Argentina (Earth of Silver).

Afghanistan - Perhaps from Upa-Ghana-Stan (in Sanskrit 'land of united tribes').

Bahamas - From the Spanish 'Baja Mar' ('shallow sea'). The Spanish conquistadors thus named the islands according to the characteristics of the water that surrounds them.

Bangladesh - From Sanskrit / Bengali. 'Bangla' means people speaking Bengali, and 'desh' is a country, so Bangladesh is a country speaking Bengali (Bengali). The country was previously part of India and the Bengali culture covers the vast territory of India and Bangladesh.

Barbados - Was named by the Portuguese explorer Pedro and Campos 'Los Barbados', which means 'bearded'. This was said about the appearance of the fig trees of the island.

Bahrain - From the Arabian 'two seas'. Only about what seas are said here, there is still a discussion. Bahrain is in a bay surrounded by Arab land and the Qatar peninsula, and some people believe that the 'two seas' is the water of the bay on both sides of the island. Others believe that in this case there is a reference to the position of the island of Bahrain in the Persian Gulf, separated by 'two seas' from the Arab coast in the south and Iran in the north.

Belarus - White Russia, according to the ancient name of one of the regions of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania (along with the Black and Chervonnaya). There are also less probable hypotheses about the so-called 'Baltic Russia' (in the Baltian languages ​​'balt' means 'white') and 'White' in the sense of 'free' from the Mongol-Tatar invasion.

Belgium - From the name of the German tribe of the Belga. Perhaps later the name came from 'Bolg' (a proto-Indo-European group of languages), meaning a bag or womb.

Belize - From the distorted Spanish pronunciation of 'Peter Wellis' - the pirate who created the first settlement in Belize in 1638. According to another version, the name came from the largest city in the country that stands on the Belize River (and the name of the river is primary here) and can be translated from the Maya as' Road from Itzza '. Itzah - an ancient city

Benin - Named after the old homonymous African Empire, on whose territory modern Benin is located. The state of Benin was formerly called Dahomei from the most numerous ethnic group.

Bulgaria - The country of a tribe formed from many tribes. 'Bulg' comes from the Turkic root, meaning 'mixed'.

Bolivia - In honor of Simon Bolivar (1783-1830), a military figure who fought with the Spaniards, and the first president of the republic (after the recognition of independence in 1824).

Bosnia and Herzegovina - Previously the country consisted of two separate territories: a large northern part was named after the Bosna river, the smaller southern part took its name from the German noble title "Duke". This title was conferred on the supreme commander of the territory by Stefan Vikchich, Emperor Frederick IV, in 1448.

Botswana - Is named after the predominant ethnic group of the country, Tswana. The past name - Bechuanaland - originated from Bechuan, another writing of 'Botswana'.

Brazil - From the tree of the same name, which, in turn, was named because of the reddish color of the wood, reminiscent of the color of hot coals (brasil in Portuguese).

Burkina Faso - The land of honest people. Previously, the country was called 'Upper Volta' from the names of the two main rivers - the White and the Black Volts - originating in Burkina Faso.

Burundi - Land speaking in the language of Rundi.

Butane - The land of Bhotia. The inhabitants of Tibet or Bhotia migrated from Tibet to Bhutan in the 10th century. The common root is 'bod', the ancient name of Tibet. The second unofficial name is Druk-Yul, which means 'land of a thunder dragon', 'land of thunder' or 'earth of a dragon'.

Vanuatu - From 'forever in our land' in the language of Bislama. Previously, the country was known as the New Hebrides Islands in honor of the islands in Scotland.

Vatican - From the lat. Vaticinari (prophesy), from the name of the hill Mons Vaticanus, on which the Vatican is located. The street at the foot of this hill was used by fortune-tellers and fortunetellers in Roman times.

United Kingdom - Painted, reference to the original settlers of the islands, who used paint and tattoos to decorate bodies; Can also come from the Celtic goddess Brigid.

Hungary - People ten copies. In other words, the "union of ten tribes." In the English transcription Hungary is written Hungary that is the land of the Huns. By the name of the tribe that came from Central Asia in the era of the great migration of peoples. Some Hungarians call themselves the descendants of the Huns (Kypchaks).

Gabon - From the Portuguese name of the Mbe River: 'Gabao' (a coat with a hood) from the specific shape of the river mouth.

Haiti - In the language of the Indians, Taino means 'high mountain', Columbus gave the name 'Hispaniola' ('little Spain'), but before him the region was called Haiti.

Guyana - Country of great water.

Ghana - In honor of the eponymous ancient West African kingdom. However, the modern territory of Ghana has never been a part of it.

Guatemala - From the eponymous capital of the state, whose name is formed from the Aztec - Guauhtemallan - a place covered with forest

Germany - The land of spearmen from the German 'ger' ('spear') and the Latin and German 'man' - man. In Latin, 'Germany' means: Allemagne is the land of all people, that is, 'our many peoples'; Deutschland is the land of the people; Nemetsy (Polish: Niemcy, Romanian: Nemti, Czech: Nemecko, Hungarian: Nemet (orszag)) - land of the dumb, where the 'dumb' is a metaphor for 'those who do not speak our language'. The Hungarian name is borrowed from the Slavic languages. 'Allemagne' - the Gauls called so all the northeastern peoples, which were an interweaving of Germanic tribes, Slavic detachments and nomadic Huns.

Honduras - From the Spanish 'depth', refers to the deep waters off the northern coast.

Grenada - From the southern Spanish city (province) of Granada.

Greece - From the lat. Graecia - Aristotle assumed that this name belonged to the indigenous peoples of Epirus (a mountain coastal region surrounded by Macedonia and Thessaly).

Denmark - Denmark-dhen (the proto-Indo-European language group) means 'low' or 'flat' and in German 'mark' means 'border land' and / or 'boundary forest'. The name was used by ancient Goths to describe the forest separating Gotland from Scania.

Djibouti - Is named after the low point of the Gulf of Aden in the Indian Ocean. Perhaps it came from the word 'gabouti' (in Afar) - a rug under the door made of palm fiber.

Dominicana - From the lat. 'Dies Dominica' ('Sunday'), the day of the week when Christopher Columbus first landed on the island.

Egypt, Arab Republic of Egypt - Through the ancient Greek language - the temple of the soul of the god Ptah.

Zambia - From the Zambezi River.

Samoa - The reserve of Sacred Moa, from moa - a local poultry, like a chicken. According to legend, the place for the sacred chicken "Sa-moa" was fenced by the order of King Lu (Lu). After battling to protect this zone, he named his son Samoa. Later Samoa became the progenitor of the Moa clan, who took charge of the island of Manua and then all the islands of Samoa.

Zimbabwe - Stone houses in Shona, related to the stone-built capital of the ancient trading empire of Great Zimbabwe.

Yemen - The origin of the name is disputed. Some sources state that it originated from the Arabic yamin, meaning 'on the right hand' (reference to Yemen's position from the point of view of the observer looking from Mecca), others suggest that the name came from yumn, meaning 'happiness', 'blessing' . The name (for the classical world - Arabia Felix) usually belonged to the entire southern coast of the Arabian Peninsula.

Israel - Another name of the biblical hero of Jacob, literally 'struggling with God'.

India - From the ancient Iranian name of the river Indus (in Hindi - Sind).

Indonesia - The Indian islands. From the Greek word νῆσος 'island', added to the name of the country India.

Iraq - From the ancient Semitic 'Uruk' ('between the rivers'), the toponym of the Mesopotamus of the Tigris and the Euphrates rivers.

Iran - Land of the Aryans or 'land of the free'. The term 'Arya' came from the Old Iranian language and usually has the meaning 'noble' or 'free', akin to the word 'aristocrat' of Greek origin. Persia (the European name of Iran): from the lat. 'Persais', from the ancient Persian 'Parsa', the central district in the country, modern Fars.

Ireland - From Eire from the Dockel Iweriu - a fertile place or 'place of Eire', the Celtic goddess of fertility.

Iceland - The land of ice (Island in Icelandic). Named to discourage strangers from trying to settle on what was really a fertile land.

Italy - Comes from the name of the tribe of Italics, in turn, possibly stemming from the abundance of cattle in the region (Greek Ιταλός, 'bull', from Latin vitulus, 'calf').

Cape Verde - From the port. Cabo Verde ('green cape'), is called the Portuguese sailors who traveled along the Sahara desert before they saw relatively green islands.

Cameroon - From the Portuguese port. Rio de Camares ('shrimp river'), named after the river Vouri by Portuguese travelers in the 15th century.

Canada - A small settlement or a 'village' in Algonquin (one of the native languages ​​of North America). This name refers to Stakadone, a settlement next to modern Quebec.

Canary Islands - (Islas Canarias, literally canine islands, from the Latin canis - the dog: according to the ancient Roman scholar Pliny the Elder, on one of these islands there were large dogs, or sea wolves - es: Otaria flavescens, also having large colonies on the islands)

Kenya - In honor of Mount Kenya, in the language of a kikuyu mountain called Kere-Nyaga ('mountain of whiteness').

Cyprus - The name is in honor of the copper mines on its territory.

Kiribati - Distorted 'Gilbert', from the European name of Gilbert Island. By the way, in Russian they are called.

China - Came from the name of the tribe of the Khitan who ruled in northern China, when the first contacts of the European and Chinese civilizations occurred.

Colombia - In honor of Christopher Columbus.

Comoros - In the Arabic 'Jazir al-Kamar' ('island of the moon').

Korea, South Korea - In honor of the Koryo dynasty, the first Korean dynasty, in which people from the west visited the country. Self-name is Hanguk (the state of Khan) or Chosun (interpreted as a 'country of morning calm').

Costa Rica - (Spanish Costa Rica), 'rich coast'.

Cuba - Kubanakan ('central place') in the language of the Taino Indians.

Kuwait - From Arabic 'kut', meaning 'fortress'.

Lesotho - In honor of the Soto tribe.

Liberia - From the lat. Liber, 'free'. It is named so because the nation was created as the birthplace for the liberated American slaves.

Lebanon - From the Jewish 'white mountains'.

Lithuania - Root of the word 'rain'.

Liechtenstein - Light stone. The country was named after the Lichtenstein dynasty, which bought and united the territories of Schellenburg and Vaduz. The Roman Emperor will allow the family to rename its new property.

Luxembourg - (Celtic 'Lucilem' - small, German 'burg' - castle) 'little castle'.

Mauritius - Is named after the Dutch ruler of Prince Mauritius (Maurice) of Orange.

Malawi - From the local 'blazing water', possibly refers to the lake of Malawi.

Malaysia - The land of the Malays.

Maldives - Perhaps from the Arabic 'mahalli dibiyat'.

Malta - From the Phoenician 'refuge'. The name is likely to have survived due to the existence of the Greek and Latin words melitta ('honey'), the name of the island in ancient times, and the main export product in those days.

Morocco - From the city of Marakesh. The local name 'Al-Maghrib Al-Aqsa' means 'Far West'.

The Marshall Islands - Named after the British captain John Marshall, who first documented the existence of the island in 1788.

Mexico - In honor of the same branch of the Aztecs.

Micronesia - From the Greek. 'Small islands'.

Moldova - From the river Moldova to Romania. The river was named because of the mining of minerals, for which its waters were used. Molde is the German term for this type of production.

Monaco - From the Greek "one, in itself" - presumably so the Phocian colonists called the local tribe of the Ligurians.

Namibia - From the Namib Desert. 'Namib' means 'a place where there is nothing' in the Nama language.

Nepal - Wool market.

Netherlands - Germanic 'low lands'. Holland (part of the Netherlands, often used for the country as a whole) is the German 'holt land', that is, the forest-covered land (very often mistakenly thought to mean 'hollow land'). Batavia is arable land (derived from Betuwe, contrasting the local name 'Veluwe' with uncultivated land).

Nicaragua - From the name of the lake of the same name, on the banks of which lived the tribe of Nicarao. Also called the leader of this tribe, treacherously killed by the Spanish conquistadors.

New Zealand - From the province of Zealand in the Netherlands, literally 'New Sea Land'.

Norway - From Old Norse northr and veg ('northern path'). The Norwegian name Norge originated from the roots of northr and rike ('northern kingdom').

Oman - Controversial origin. In some sources, the name comes from the Arabic term 'sedentary' (as opposed to nomads), or from other Arabic words meaning 'peace' and 'trust'. Others claim that the country was named after a historical personage, perhaps Oman bin Ibrahim al-Khalil, Oman bin Siba 'bin Yaghthan bin Ibrahim, Oman bin Qahtan or Oman bin Loot (the Arabic name of the biblical character of Lot). The name existed for a while and was mentioned by the geographer Ptolemy (85-165 AD)

Pakistan - Acronym (provinces: Punjab, Afghanistan, Kashmir, Iran, Sind, Tokharistan). It also means 'a country of pure, impeccable', since 'pak' means 'clean'.

Panama - In honor of the village that existed earlier, next to the modern capital. In the Indian language, the kueva means 'a place where there are a lot of fish', perhaps from the Caribbean 'abundance of butterflies' or from another local name belonging to the same tree.

Papua New Guinea - Papua means 'land of people with curly hair'. Named so by the neighboring Malays, whose hair is mostly straight.

Peru - Perhaps, from the Biru River in modern Ecuador.

Poland - The official name of the united Polish-Lithuanian state from the time of the Lublin Union 1569 to 1795. It comes from the Polish Rzeczpospolita - a complete tracing note from Latin res publica (literally: public business - republic).

Portugal - From the Visigothic Portucale, in turn from the Latin Portus, the 'port' and the names of the settlement of Gaia (in the Latin pronunciation - Cale). The derivative name belonged to the small town of Portucale, now Porto.

Romania - The country of the Romans, since the local 'Romanized' population called themselves Rumani or Romani.

Salvador - A savior in Spanish, is named after Jesus Christ.

San Marino - In honor of Saint Marino, who, according to legend, founded San Marino in 301

Sao Tome and Principe - Portuguese: the islands of St. Thomas and Prince.

Seychelles - Named in honor of Jean Moreau de Sesel, Minister of Finance of the King of France Louis XV.

Singapore - The city was founded by Sir Stamford Raffles in 1819 and he borrowed the name Singapore from the Malay language. Sinhapura was also the early name of the island. In turn, Sinhapura came from Sanskrit (Simhapura), which means 'city of lions'.

Slovakia - From the Slavic 'glory' or 'word'.

Slovenia - Similarly to Slovakia.

Sudan - From the Arabic Bilad as-Sudan, 'the land of the blacks'.

Surinam - In honor of the people of Surinen (Surinen), local American settlers.

Sierra Leone - Adapted either from the Spanish version of Sierra Leon, or from the Portuguese Serra-Leoa ('lion's mountain').

Tajikistan - The country of the Tajiks, from the self-name of the Tajiks and the suffix '-istan / -state', which goes back to the Indo-European root * st? - 'stand' and means 'place, country'. In modern Persian-Tajik, the suffix '-istan' is used to form toponyms - geographical names for the places of residence of tribes, peoples and various ethnic groups. The name appeared in 1924 as a result of the national-territorial delimitation of Central Asia and the creation of the Tajik Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic (in 1929 - 1991 - the Tajik SSR). The historical name of the Tajik land is Turan. Later, the country of the Tajiks was known as Varazrud, Mawaraunnahr, Bukhara.

Taiwan - Bay with terraces in Chinese. Rice fields make up the typical landscape of Taiwan.

Thailand - From the Thai 'land of the free'. Previously, the country was known as Siam. Siam - the name was given to the ancient Thais by their neighbors and perhaps derived from the toponym in Pali 'Suvarnabhuma' ('Land of Gold'), the other root 'sama' means different shades of colors, mostly brown or yellow, but sometimes green or black (Note in Sanskrit Siam means 'beautiful').

Tanzania - The combination of the names of the two states that are part of this country - Tanganyika and Zanzibar.

Togo - From the settlement of Togo. In the language of the local people, 'eve' is water and 'go' is the shore.

Tonga - From the local 'south', 'south'. The islands are named so by James Cook. In the 19th century, they were known as the 'Islands of Friendship'.

Trinidad and Tobago - Trinidad in honor of the three protruding mountain peaks and the Christian trinity (trinidad is a trio or trio in Spanish). 'Tobago' - in honor of the tobacco that local residents smoked.

Tuvalu - From the local 'eight islands' or 'eight standing together'. The early name - Niulakita, which was banned, was the name of the first atoll.

Uganda - From the early 'Buganda', 'land of people', the ethnonym of the people that dominate the area.

Ukraine - There are options: from the Slavic 'border territory' (outskirts), from the Slavic 'country' (the land), from the Slavic root 'to steal' - to cut off, to separate.

Fiji - From the Tonganese name of the islands 'Viti'.

Philippines - The land of King Philip (Spanish monarch in the 16th century).

France - The land of the Franks, literally 'the land of free people'. The country was previously known as Gaul from the Celtic tribe.

Croatia - It is not known, it is usually believed that it originated from the Sarmatian language. From the name of the tribe 'White Croats'. Previously lived in the territory of the present Lviv and Transcarpathian regions of Ukraine, and then moved to the territory of modern Croatia during the resettlement of peoples.

Chile - Is unknown. Perhaps from the araka (Aracaunian, the language of the settlers) the name of the 'depth', which is a reference to the fact that the Andes loom over a narrow coastal plain. Also, the possible origin of 'Chile' may be the 'limit of the world' ('end of the world') in the language of the Quechua people.

Switzerland - From the canton of Schwyz, perhaps earlier this name came from the German 'Schweitz', the 'swamp'.

Sweden - The people of Svea. The exact development of the ethnonym is unknown, it is known that it originated from the ancient Scandinavian 'Svithjoth', the origin of 'Svi', 'thjoth' from the German 'people' ('people') is unknown. The term Svithjoth was originally used to refer to various localities encountered in Scandinavian mythology, including areas in Scandinavia and / or modern Russia. The obscure manner of using this toponym suggests that it was used for areas in general unknown, but exactly on the other side north or west of what the Goths, the most frequent users of the term, considered a zone of civilization. The derivative name Svear rike ('Kingdom of Swine') appears to have appeared after the northern people of Heruli were forced out of the Gothic kingdom into southern Scandinavia. It would be logical to assume that the Heruli, displaced beyond the northern borders of the Kingdom of Gotha, could take the traditional name 'Sweet'. In the end, they captured the ready and from now on, modern scientists can talk about the existence of Sweden, rather than one of its constituent territories.

Sri Lanka - A shiny island in Sanskrit. Serendip is an ancient name, derived from Sinhala-dweepa in Sanskrit meaning either 'land of lions' or 'land of the people of Sinhala', sinha means 'lion' in Sanskrit, Sinhala - early settlers of this locality. Ceylon (Ceylon - English, Cilan - Portuguese, Seilan) - the previous names of the country, also meaning 'land of lions'.

Ecuador - Equator in Spanish.

Equatorial Guinea - Equatorial - from the geographical position, 'Guinea' - perhaps from the word 'aguinaoui' in the Berber language, which means 'black'.

Eritrea - Called the Italian colonialists, from the ancient Greek name of the Red Sea 'Erythrea Thalassa'.

Estonia - From the German 'eastern path'. It is usually mistakenly believed that the name came from Aestia in ancient Greek sources, but in fact Aestia is modern Mazuria in Poland and perhaps the name came from the Baltic root meaning 'motley', as this land is littered with lakes.

Ethiopia - From the lat. Aethiopia, meaning 'the land of blacks'. The root of the word in Greek comes from aithein 'burn' and ops 'face'. The old name of Abyssinia originated from the Arabic 'mixed', a reflection of many peoples inhabiting the country.

Jamaica - In the language of the Indians, 'Hamaica' means the land of wood and water, or perhaps the land of springs.

Japan - From the Chinese zhibengo is the country of the rising sun, which marks the fact that Japan lies east of China (where the sun is rising). Japanese scientists borrowed the term, simplifying Nippon-go, Nihon-go to just Nippon or Nihon ('the source of the sun').

Lapland - Edge of the earth