ALBANIA (Region & Country) Late Roman, English, Spanish, Italian
Medieval Latin name for the region which was once occupied by the Illyrian tribe called Albanoi. This is the name of a country in the Balkans.
ANGOLA (Country) Portuguese, English, Spanish, French, Italian, German, Dutch
Portuguese form of Ngola
, the royal title of the kings of Ndongo, an African kingdom which was conquered by the Portuguese in the 17th-century. It was a Portuguese colony until 1975, when it became an independent country.
ARGENTINA (Country) Spanish, English, Portuguese, Italian, Russian, Czech, Croatian, Serbian, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish
From Latin argentinus
meaning "silvery", a derivative of argentum
meaning "silver". This is the name of a country in South America, arising from a Latinized form of Spanish Río de la Plata
meaning "river of silver".
ARMENIA (Country) English, Spanish, Italian, Romanian, Greek, Norwegian, Ancient Roman, Ancient Greek, Ancient Persian
From Greek Αρμενια (Armenia)
, which was from Old Persian Armina
, which is itself probably of Armenia origin. This is the name of a country in the Caucasus region, called Hayastan
ASTURIAS (Political Subdivision) Spanish
Possibly derived from Basque asta
"rock" and ur
"water". This was the name of an 8th to 10th-century kingdom of northern Iberia. It is now the name of a Spanish province.
BOHEMIA (Region) English, Spanish, Late Roman
From Latin Boiohaemum
, from the name of the Gaulish tribe the Boii
combined with Germanic heim
"home". This is the name of a historical region within the Czech Republic. The region is called Čechy
in Czech, while the country is called Česko
BULGARIA (Country) Late Roman, English, Spanish, Italian
From the name of the Turkic tribe of the Bulgars, possibly from a Turkic root meaning "mixed". This is the name of a country in southeastern Europe.
BUSTILLO (Settlement) Spanish
From a diminutive of Late Latin bustum
meaning "ox pasture". This is the name of towns in Spain.
BUSTO (Settlement) Spanish, Italian
From Late Latin bustum
meaning "ox pasture". This is the name of several towns in Spain and Italy.
CHAD (Body of Water & Country) English, Spanish
From Arabic تشاد (Tshad)
, derived from a Kanuri word meaning "lake, large expanse of water". This is the name of a lake in central Africa, as well as the country that is named after it. The lake also borders Niger, Nigeria and Cameroon.
CHAVES (Settlement) Portuguese, Spanish
From the Roman name FLAVIUS
. This is the name of a Portuguese city which was originally named for the Roman emperor Vespasian, whose family name was Flavius.
COLUMBIA (Region, Settlement, Political Subdivision & River) English, Italian, Spanish
Named after the explorer Christopher Columbus, called Cristoforo Colombo
in Italian (see the surname COLOMBO
). This is the name of several cities in the Americas (including the District of Columbia, also called Washington D.C.), and a river in Canada and the United States. It is also a name used historically to refer to the New World.
CONGO (River & Country) English, French, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Danish
, of uncertain origin, the name of a kingdom in central Africa that existed from the 14th to 19th century. The Congo River (also called the Zaire
River) was named after the kingdom. Belgian and French colonies were established in the 19th century, named after the river, which eventually led to two African countries, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (formerly Zaire) and the Republic of the Congo.
ETXEBERRIA (Settlement) Basque
Means "the new house", from Basque etxe
"house" and berri
"new". This was the name of a village (and castle) in Navarre where the saint Francis Xavier was born.
FRIULI (Region) Italian, English, Spanish
From the name of the Roman town of Forum Iulii (now called Cividale del Friuli
) meaning "forum of Julius". This is the name of a region in northeast Italy.
GHANA (Country) English, French, German, Dutch, Italian, Spanish, Polish, Czech, Slovak
From the name of the Ghana Empire, which was located in the southwestern Sahara and existed up to the 13th century. Ghana
, meaning "warrior" in Mande, was actually the title of the rulers, while the empire itself was more properly known as Awkar
. In 1957 this was adopted as the name of the newly independent country of Ghana, formerly the British colony Gold Coast, despite the fact that the country lies outside the empire's territory.
GUINEA (Region, Country & Island) English, Italian, Spanish, German
From Portuguese Guiné
, which is of unknown meaning, possibly of Berber origin. This name was used by the Portuguese to refer to a portion of western Africa. It was also applied by westerners to the island of New Guinea starting in the 16th century. It is now the name or part of the name of the countries of Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Equatorial Guinea and Papua New Guinea.
IBARRA (Settlement) Basque, Spanish
Derived from Basque ibar
meaning "meadow". This is the name of a few Basque towns.
IRAK (Country) German, French, Spanish, Dutch, Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, Finnish, Hungarian, Polish, Russian, Bulgarian, Croatian, Serbian, Slovak
Form of IRAQ
IRAQ (Country) Arabic, English, Italian, Catalan
From Arabic العراق (al-'Iraq)
, probably derived from the name of the ancient Sumerian/Akkadian city of URUK
. This is the name of a country in the Middle East.
LEIRE (Mountain) Basque
Possibly from Latin legionarius
meaning "pertaining to a legion". This is the name of a mountain in Navarre, the site of an old monastery.
LORETO (Settlement) Italian, Spanish
From Latin Lauretum
meaning "laurel grove". This is the name of a town in eastern Italy.
LOYOLA (Settlement) Spanish
From Basque Loiola
, from loi
meaning "mud". This is the name of a place near the town of Azpeitia in the Basque Country of Spain.
MACARENA (Settlement) Spanish
Barrio (district) in Seville, which got its name from a temple which may have been named for a person Macarius
MONGOLIA (Country, Political Subdivision & Region) English, Spanish, Italian
From Mongolian монгол (mongol)
, the name for the Mongolian people, possibly from монг (mong)
meaning "brave". This the name of a region in eastern Asia, now divided between the country of Mongolia (historically called Outer Mongolia) and the Chinese region of Inner Mongolia.
NEPAL (Country) Nepali, Indian, Hindi, English, German, Dutch, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, Sanskrit
From Sanskrit नेपाल (Nepal)
, of unknown meaning. This is the name of a landlocked country in south Asia.
NIGERIA (Country) English, French, Italian, Spanish, German
From the name of the NIGER
River, applied in the 19th century to the British colonial territory in western Africa. It continued to be used after the territory became an independent country in 1960.
PADUA (Settlement) English, German, Spanish, Dutch
From Italian Padova
, Latin Patavium
, of unknown meaning. This is the name of a city in northern Italy.
PERSIA (Country) Ancient Roman, English, Spanish, Italian
Latin form of Greek Περσις (Persis)
, from Old Persian Parsa
. This is the name used in the West for a region in western Asia, as well as several empires which were based there, including the Achaemenid Empire, Parthian Empire, and Sasanian Empire. This was also the Western name for the country of Iran until 1935, when the king requested that the native name Iran
be used instead.
PORTUGAL (Country) Portuguese, English, French, Spanish, Galician, Catalan, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Croatian, Serbian
, which was derived from PORTUS CALE
, the old name of the city of Porto. The name of the city was later applied to the entire country.
SAMARRA (Settlement) Arabic, English, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, French, German
This is the name of a city in Iraq, the capital of the Abbasid Caliphate in the 9th century. It was possibly built at the site of the ancient Assyrian city of Surmarrati
, which is of uncertain meaning.
SANTA ANA (Settlement) Spanish
The name of several places in the Spanish-speaking world, in honour of Saint ANNA
SANTIAGO (Settlement) Spanish, Portuguese
This is the name of several cities in Spain and Portugal, so-named for Saint JAMES
(see the given name SANTIAGO
for more information). It is also used for many other cities in the Spanish and Portuguese-speaking worlds, notably the capital city of Chile.
SCHWYZ (Settlement & Political Subdivision) German, English, Spanish
Meaning uncertain, possibly related to Old High German suedan
"to burn" or possibly of Celtic origin. This is the name of a town (and a canton named for it) in central Switzerland
VALENCIA (Settlement & Region) Spanish, Italian, English, German
The name of a city and surrounding region in eastern Spain, originally named in Latin Valentia (Edetanorum)
meaning "strength (of the Edetani people)", and derived from Latin valentius
"strength, vigour", from valens
"strong, vigourous". Besides the city in Spain, this is also the name of a city in Venezuala.
ZABALA (Settlement) Basque
From Basque zabal
meaning "large, wide". This is the name of district within the city of Bilbao in Spain.