How Countries Got Their Names

The etymology or origin of words which are used to name countries is very fascinating as it says a lot about the people who founded and live in a place. Recently an Australian credit card comparison site put together maps of what each country’s name literally means. We found it very insightful and so are sharing it with you.

A quick look around the globe shows that many countries have names which describe that their people and values. For instance Canada literally means The Village which is fitting as it’s open immigration policies make it a global village.  China means Center Kingdom or other translations call it the Middle Kingdom as to the ancient  Chinese their land was at the center of the known world.

Names matter as they define who you are as a people
In Asia the literal meaning of countries’ names are equally interesting. There are the literal names such as Thailand meaning Land of the Tai People and then there are the romantic names such as Bhutan which means Land of the Thunder Dragon. Some names are descriptive like Australia which means Southern Land and some are very poetic like New Zealand which means Land of the Long White Cloud.

But perhaps our favorite is Sri Lanka or Blessed Island.