Names of Countries, States and Cities

  1. What is the meaning of Kerala?
  2. What is the meaning of Germany?
  3. What is the meaning of England?
  4. Why is Bangkok called Bangkok? What does that word mean in Thai?
  5. What does Chiang Mai mean?
  6. What is the meaning of Iran?
  7. Why is Georgia called Georgia? Or Sartekevalos (their own name)?
  8. What is the meaning of Bangladesh?
  9. Why is Japan called Nippon or Nippon Koku? Or the land of the rising sun?
  10. What is the meaning of Venezuela?
  11. What does Canada mean?
  12. What does Quebec mean?
  13. What is the meaning of Jamaica?
  14. What does Argentina and Rio de la Plata mean and how are they related? How does Martín del Barco Centenera play into this?
  15. What does Belarus mean?
  16. What does Norway (Noreg/Norge) mean?
  17. What does Ukraine mean and why do many call it “the Ukraine”?
  18. What does Yugoslavia mean?
  19. What does Austria mean?
  20. What does Yunan mean?

15 Comments

Filed under Linguistics, Regional

15 responses to “Names of Countries, States and Cities

  1. Lin

    Most of them are well known
    iran—land of the Aryans
    Bangladesh–Country(desh) of the bangalis
    Belarus–white Russia ?
    Yugoslavia–southern slavia
    ………
    As a Chinese, from the Chinese ideograms
    Yunan–Land under the cloud to the south. I could be wrong. ‘yun’ or cloud could be the ancient name of a region.
    Japan–Where the sun rises

  2. Jason Y

    Annam means south as in nam means south in several East Asian languages. Like Kangnam (Korean word) means (Insert word here) south. Buk would mean north.

    Correct, Annam means “peaceful south” – An means peaceful or pacified and nam means south.

    Jamaica is the Amerindian name for the island, I think.

    Comes from an Arawak word Xaymaca meaning Land of Wood and Water or Land of Springs.

    • Jason Y

      Buk and nam are Korean words, but I’m sure nam is shared between several East Asian nations due to the influence of China.

    • Jason Y

      Bangkok means bang your cock into some hot Asian pussy and Iran is a reference to the Aryans, so it must be a hot spot for WNs.

      • SHI

        Bangkok means bang your cock into some hot Asian pussy

        Even though I’m not Thai, I take offense as that city is very close to my heart. Bangkok doesn’t mean anything like those modern perversions of the name. In Thai language, the name is simply “Krung Thep” which literally means the City of Beautiful Angels. You can find so many of those angels at every cross-walk, bar, temple and shopping center.

        • Jason Y

          just joking😆

          Obviously WNs are not so sensitive when they’re bashing mixed raced people are they?

        • Jason Y

          You don’t want to offend nations, even though they have a reputation for a sex industry. These nations are very proud of who they are. Expect to stabbed to death next to time your travel there. No joke.

  3. SHI

    What is the meaning of Kerala?
    –> Don’t really like to travel much down south. “Kerala” may have something to do with coconuts but not sure. The language, Malayalam is unintelligible.

    Many people think it means “coconut,” but actually it means land of the Chera, a people who lived there, shortened to “Kera.”

    What is the meaning of Germany?
    –> Very easy. The word Germany came from “Germania” during Roman times. First noted by Julius Caesar himself in his diary referring to the barbarians living to the north east of Rhine river. Germans refer to only one of the tribes in the present geographical region of Germany. It has nothing to do with “germane”, another Latin word which used to mean related. The present meaning of which is “relevant”.

    Correct! The Germania tribe lived in what is now the Netherlands.

    What is the meaning of England?
    –> A number of tribes living in Germany and Netherlands invaded present day Britain – the “Angles” who specifically came from Schleswig-Holstein near Hamburg, “Saxons”, “Jutes” and many more. England literally means the “land of the Angles”. England is “Angleterre” in French.

    Correct!

    Why is Bangkok called Bangkok? What does that word mean in Thai?
    –> The Thai word is “Krung Thep” which literally means the “City of Angels”. So, Bangkok is really the Los Angeles of the Orient.

    Actually it is Krug Thep MaHaNakhamon. MaHaNakhamon means “Great City” in Sanskrit. The word in Thai is also supposed to mean “Olive Village.”

    The word “Bangkok” itself is of colloquial unknown origin, a corruption of Thai language sounds by foreign visitors to Siam in the 17th-18th centuries. Despite the unknown origins, the name stuck.

    It is corruption of MaHaNakhon into “Bangkok.”

    What is the meaning of Iran?
    –> Aryan. The Iranians from ancient times, referred to themselves as the original “Aryans”.

    Yes!

    Why is Georgia called Georgia? Or Sartekevalos (their own name)?
    –> Easy. St. George, the dragon-slayer? Unless you’re referring to that small country in the Caucasus region which I’m not sure.

    It refers to the small country and it is indeed a reference to St. George, as he was very popular in that country.

    What is the meaning of Bangladesh?
    –> The land of “Bengali”-speaking people. “Desh” literally means land in Sanskrit, Hindi, Bengali and other Indian languages.

    Right, land of the Bangla people and the Bangla language.

    What does Canada mean?
    –> The name comes from a similarly sounding Iroquoian tribe word for village. Some French explorer picked it up and the word “Canada” has stayed ever since.

    Comes from the Iroquoian word kanata meaning settlement or village.

    What does Quebec mean?
    –> No idea. But must be something similar to some French explorer’s encounter with local tribes in the region.

    Yes comes from the Iroquoian word kébec which means “where the river narrows.”

    What is the meaning of Jamaica?
    –> Does it have anything to do with King James I of England early 17th century? The author of the King James Bible?

    No, it does not.

    What does Belarus mean?
    –> Bela means “white” — so Belarus is literally “White Russian” — it refers to those Slavic tribes in that region (and to the west in Poland).

    Precisely why they were called “white” is unclear

    .

    Correct!

    What does Norway (Noreg/Norge) mean?
    –> North. Literally means North way – Northernmost way.

    Exactly. From Old Norse Norð-vegr, which means the way of the North.

    What does Ukraine mean and why do many call it “the Ukraine”?
    –> “Krai” means border in many Slavic languages. So, it must be something to do with border.

    Correct it means “border.” It is called the Ukraine because that means “the border.”

    What does Yugoslavia mean?
    –> Yugo or “Jugo” means south. So, should be southern Slavs.

    Exactly! Yugo means south in Serbo-Croatian.

    What does Austria mean?
    –> Originates from “Osterreich” which literally means towards the “east”.

    Right, it means Eastern Kingdom/Land/Country.

    What does Yunan mean?
    –> Nopes

    Related to Viet Nam. Hehe.

  4. SHI

    Robert, voting has started on Brexit – UK’s withdrawal from the European Union. It’s going to have far-reaching repercussions on the global economy. Currency exchange rates will plunge, some smaller economies that depend on the UK for their survival will suffer a bit of a meltdown. Greedy Wall Street douchebags are planning to relocate their extortion agencies that are presently based in the City of London, to Frankfurt and Hong Kong

    http://www.bangkokpost.com/news/world/1017918/voting-starts-on-brexit

    I would have supported the “leave” faction if I were a UK citizen. Hope they get rid of the bureaucratic mess called European Union. Looks like leave is gaining momentum as the polls draw to a close. Final results will be out in another 24 hours.

    • SHI

      http://time.com/4379335/polls-open-uk-vote-eu-referendum-brexit-remain/

      Turnout is expected to be high, but bad weather on polling day could put off some voters. As polls opened at 7 a.m. local time, authorities issued flood warnings for 22 areas in southeast England, including some parts of London, the BBC said.

      London and the South-east is where they are mostly planning to vote “remain” owing to the multicultural population and Europhile liberal demographics. Looks like “Leave” has just gained a last minute advantage.

  5. jorge

    Argentina comes from “argentum”, name in Latin language for silver.

    Rio de la Plata (River Plate) is the name of the estuary (wrongly denominated as a river) of Parana river. Was put by Spaniards because of legends that they heard from some indigenous of the region, that said that there were a place full of silver and gold in the west. Nowdays is believed that they referred to cities of Tahuantinsuyo (so called “incan empire”, when actually “inca” was the title of emperor of Quechuas), that were thousands of kilometers far away from this estuary. This legend was spread between many European adventurers, so they started to refer to this river like River Plate and the whole region like Argentina, for it relation with Latin word “argentum”. And this denomination (Argentina) spread much more since poetry of Martin del Barco Centenera.

  6. Jason Y

    Well, I got my knowledge from encyclopedias I read as a child. But the bullies in 7th grade had some interesting comments about that:

    (In a Country accent) “I heard you read encyclopedias. We’re gonna set fire to them,.. hee heee heee. 😆

  7. Sami

    Yunan is Arabic for Greece.

  8. “Belarus” was called “white” because Slavs seem to use colours to indicate directions, probably under influence of steppe nomads. Hence “White Croats”, “REd Rus”, “Black Rus” and “White Rus” (of which only white rus surived as a name to modern times)

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