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Questions tagged [place-names]

For questions about naming cities, countries, islands and other places in Latin.

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Is *Moscovia* a latinists' invention?

Quoting this article on Grammatica Russica by Heinrich Wilhelm Ludolf: The Russian city of Novgorod (literally ‘new town’) becomes (in the ablative case) Novogorodio. Moscow is Moscovia, though it ...
Roger V.'s user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
142 views

Meaning of old Greek neighborhoods' names

I was curious about the meaning/origins/etymology of the names of some of the well-known historic neighborhoods of central Athens. I can assume that due to their age, there's a connection to classical ...
Cocktail's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
160 views

Gender of Street Names and Village Locations

I can find references on the gender of countries and cities, but nothing on street names or small locations (say within a village). Transcribing Manorial Records of the late 17th century, I have a ...
user3588542's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
177 views

Gadiovala / Kadiofala meaning

Ksar Sbahi (Or Ksar Sebihi) is a town in the district of Oum El Bouaki, Algeria. Under the Roman occupation, the same town held the name (Gadiovala / Kadiofala). I wonder ir someone can explain the ...
Hamdiken's user avatar
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12 votes
1 answer
825 views

Are prepositions really never used with cities?

We're taught that the names of cities and small islands do not use prepositions for being in, going into, or leaving these places: It's not in Roma but Romae. It's not in Romam but Romam. It's not e/...
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
16 votes
5 answers
4k views

A Latin adjective for New York?

The city of New York is often called Novum Eboracum in Latin. Let us ignore other options for the purpose of this question; I just want to understand city names with two or more words through an ...
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
11 votes
2 answers
945 views

How to pronounce "Roterodamus"?

The adjective roterodamus means “of Rotterdam” (the city in Holland). To lovers of Latin, unless they entertain an unusual interest in Dutch geography, the word is familiar probably primarily because ...
Sebastian Koppehel's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
477 views

"Washington, DC" in latin

Is there a more-or-less commonly accepted translation of "Washington, DC" (i.e., the city, but I would assume the same word would work for the state) in contemporary-latin? I'll happily use ...
Stephan Kolassa's user avatar
5 votes
3 answers
203 views

What was the decision regarding this Paris convent in 1561?

This is the decision of the General Chapter of the Dominicans regarding some trouble in the Paris convent in 1561. Fratres vero Antonium Abeli magistrum et Dominicum Sergent ut indignos denegamus, ...
user558840's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
123 views

Why is Novarupta feminine?

Today is the anniversary of the Novarupta eruption, the largest volcanic eruption of the 20th century. Nova rupta is of course good Latin for "new broken thing", where the thing in question is ...
Figulus's user avatar
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6 votes
1 answer
836 views

Mountains and Mountain Ranges: Names

I have been recently enjoying Mark Walker's delightful translation of Professor Tolkien's masterpiece, The Hobbit (Hobbitus Ille). I was especially charmed by Tolkien's maps, translated into Latin (...
Figulus's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
66 views

Translate location names for two continents

I've been working on a fictional world called 'Solum'. On this planet are two continents. Is it grammatically correct to call the larger continent 'Soli Major' and the smaller 'Soli Minor'? I'm not ...
Adam's user avatar
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8 votes
2 answers
299 views

Is the locative used with multi-part city names?

The Duolingo Latin course mentions New York a lot. (I'd rather have it focused on the geography of ancient Italy than the modern US, but that's beside the point now.) The locative comes up regularly: ...
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
280 views

Someone of someplace

I'm wondering how someone would have said where they're from, sort of as a locational surname. To perhaps better explain, in English we might say, 'Hello, I'm Susan of London.' How would you say ...
Ali's user avatar
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12 votes
1 answer
1k views

Did the Romans really speak of "mare nostrum"?

I have heard a number of times that the Romans called the Mediterranean Sea mare nostrum, "our sea". But was this really the Roman name for the Mediterranean Sea in any significant way? I have three ...
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
225 views

Are there any relationships between the given name Pompeius and the city name Pompeii?

Are there any relationships between the given name Pompeius (like in Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus) and the city name Pompeii (the city thas was destroyed in a volcanic eruption? What do they mean?
d-b's user avatar
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13 votes
2 answers
1k views

Do plural names referring to a singular thing require a plural verb?

Another question related to my geography of the Roman Empire which I am writing has arisen: during the time of Trajan, 117 AD, there were several provinces which had names in the plural, especially ...
Ethan Bierlein's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
402 views

Meaning of Aquae Sextiae

The Battle of Aquae Sextiae is the site where the Teutones and Ambrones were defeated by the Romans under Gaius Marius in 102 BC. What does this place name in English? It is located in modern-day ...
BJ Dela Cruz's user avatar
10 votes
1 answer
367 views

What does the Latin place name 'Rezii' refer to?

I came across a book published in 1753 with the publisher location listed as 'Rezii'. I cannot find any reference to this name online. Here is a link to the book information. The only libraries that ...
terminex9's user avatar
  • 397
4 votes
2 answers
171 views

Does Malta use the locative?

The locative is used to express a location in a city or a small island, e.g. Romae instead of in Roma. But it's not entirely clear which islands are small. I am currently on Malta and I'm curious to ...
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
2k views

What is the etymology of the Latin name of Cambridge?

Cambridge is known in Latin as Cantabrigia, and I do not recall seeing other names in use. What is the etymology of this name and how does it relate to the English one? It does remotely resemble the ...
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
9 votes
2 answers
725 views

Mediterranean Sea name in Old Latin

It is well known that the Romans referred to the Mediterranean Sea as mare nostrum, especially after the Punic Wars when they had claimed Iberia, Northern Africa, Sicily, etc. But what did they ...
ellman121's user avatar
  • 193
4 votes
1 answer
210 views

Does Fontana di Trevi have a Latin name?

Fontana di Trevi is a fountain in Rome, built in 1762. Does it have a (trustworthy) Latin name? The Latin Wikipedia page uses the name Fontana Trebii, but no reference is given. This name appears to ...
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
9 votes
1 answer
457 views

How did the Romans latinize foreign names (personal, place names)?

I am looking for references to linguistic work on latinization of foreign names by the Romans from the earliest days to the early centuries AD. As this is perhaps quite a wide topic, some field review ...
kkm mistrusts SE's user avatar
8 votes
4 answers
237 views

Quomodo "Bloomington" reddere?

How do you say "Bloomington" in Latin? I figure that the text of a Latin diploma for a degree granted in Bloomington would likely be authoritative, but I haven't found one yet. This nice old book, ...
Ben Kovitz's user avatar
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10 votes
1 answer
1k views

Deriving adjectives from city names

One can often derive adjectives from city names, the most famous example probably being Romanus from Roma. Such derivatives are typically formed with -anus or -ensis. My impression is that -anus is ...
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
160 views

What is Eura called in Latin?

What is the name of the municipality (small city) Eura in Latin? The name in Finnish and Swedish is Eura and it would be reasonable that the Latin name is the same. However, I haven't managed to find ...
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
614 views

Is 'Delphī' a second declension word?

From the genitive 'Delphōrum', it seems to belong to the second declension. But is it used as a singular or a plural?
Takeshi's user avatar
  • 71
8 votes
2 answers
3k views

Latin declension of a proper name, especially a city name

How can I figure out the Latin declension of a proper name, especially a city name? For example, consider the city of Marash in Turkey. It appears in various forms in medieval Latin sources: Marasim, ...
turuncu's user avatar
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8 votes
2 answers
557 views

Etymology of "Fenni" in Tacitus

Tacitus mentions the people Fenni in Germania (46), and this people lived somewhere near modern Finland. I am interested in the etymology of this word. Do we know where Tacitus got the word Fennus? ...
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
666 views

What are your views on inventing place-names in Latin? [closed]

This is a kind of extension to the question about -landia as a proper way of forming a country's Latin name. Correspondents, usually helpful, comment on my Latin syntax and, ever seeking improvement, ...
Tom Cotton's user avatar
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10 votes
2 answers
978 views

Is "-landia" good Latin?

Several Latin names of modern countries end in -landia if the corresponding English name ends in -land: Islandia, Nederlandia, Irlandia, Thailandia, Finlandia (also Finnia). England has a much older ...
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
18 votes
3 answers
9k views

What are the Latin names for modern countries?

With the Olympics starting this week, I got interested in all the countries of the world. Naturally, I would like to know the Latin names for modern countries. I have only been able to find a few ...
Sam K's user avatar
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51 votes
3 answers
24k views

Why is the language of ancient Rome called "Latin" instead of "Roman"?

Nearly every human language is named after the people who spoke it, from ancient Egyptian, Hebrew and Greek, to modern tongues such as English, German and Chinese. And then we have the language of the ...
Mason Wheeler's user avatar