That’s a pretty interesting topic. Names have sometimes developed over centuries. Here’s an example from my home, Germany: While it’s Germany in English - derived from the tribes that lived on the other side of the Rhine in Roman times, it’s Allemagne in French - derived from the group of people who where France’s direct neighbours during the middle ages. In German, it’s called Deutschland, derived from the German word for German, deutsch. Interestingly enough, the German word for German is not even of German origin, it is actually a derivate from Latin ‘theodisc’, which was used during Roman times to describe the language of the common people as compared to the Latin speaking upper class.
If I could like your post more, I would.
As a plucky Brit I just consider anyone from your neck of the woods as a Convict
But of course we call it “Australia” since we probably named it that.
Since the Empire was at its strongest just as the world was becoming more learned I guess that’s why Anglicised names are the most prevalent.
But then I was always intrigued as to why Latin stayed the language of the sciences. Odd that as Britain rode roughshod over the world and enforced our language on everyone we invaded that our Scientists retained Latin as the naming language of choice.
In Russian Australia is pronounced as Avstralia (Австралия), with /av/ instead of /ɒ/, so almost the same but russian-ized. Other places may differ, but we rarely have special names, usually it is something transliterated (sometimes badly). E.g. Munich is more similar to Munchen (Мюнхен), New York (Нью-Йорк) is identical. You can check how it sounds here: https://translate.google.com/#view=home&op=translate&sl=en&tl=ru&text=Melbourne
I’ve wondered long an hard on that one too but French is largely based on Latin and if you speak it (latin) with a hokey Hollywood accent (french), it has a certain appeal.
I see… that’s interesting. There is a phrase in my native tongue for Netherland, “Țările de jos” roughly meaning “the low lands”, but it’s almost never used. Generic used word is “Olanda”, best known for the “clockwork orange”, “portocala mecanică”
I don’t find it surprising at all that Latin was the language of science for so long. It was the one language spoken by most learned people, no matter where they came from - much like English today. Latin also had the advantage of being a rather ‘set’ language especially during the Middle Ages, when most other European languages were still changing quite a lot, including English. Just think of the effects the Norman conquest of 1066 had. It is the reason why, to this day, you use different words for the animal in the field and the meat on your plate: pig - pork, sheep - mutton etc.
Same here, Olanda or I Paesi Bassi, which means exactly “the low lands”
Also I believe the fact that Britain made many of the maps will be a large part of this.
We named things on the maps in
English (Cologne rather than Koln as you said etc etc)
Since most of the world probably grew up with an English made Atlas or Globe that probably made a lot of Anglicised place names stick.
Our influence (good, bad and ugly) can be seen all over. Look at the number of Newcastle’s or Birmingham’s for example.
Isn’t that a Kubrick movie about a nutbar?
… and the name of the Netherland national footbal team
Alman is the race of people who are living in Almanya(Germany = Almanya in Turkish).
And Australia is Avustralya(almost same when pronounce)
As a native German I may have an answer.
Germany is historically not a uniform State. In the past it was divided in many small countries and every region has it’s own tribe…base of what a German is called in other countries is the tribe they were in contact with.
Here most common examples:
Allemagne, Alman and similar comes from tribe “Alemannen” which were settled most in West Germany.
German comes from tribe “Germanen” which is a clan found in middle Europe and South Scandinavia
And finally Deutschland…which is native German name for Germany. It is not that obvious but it comes from the clan of Teutonen. They came originally from south Denmark and roamed around Europe…and settled also in Germany
Most of those clans were mentioned even from old Romans.
BTW: @sft1965 in German you are: Australier
Cheers. I was familiar with Turkish for word for Australia and it seemed intuitive, but just not the Alman thing.
EDIT for all: I want to know what you would say to a stranger without knowing where they are from in your own language; a couple have got this but i want more…
I am wondering where the difference for Austria come from…
In German (which is also native language in Austria) it is “Österreich”. Why is the English version so close to Australia and so totally different to what they call themselves?
Maybe one of our Austrian forum members can clarify here?
The low lands comes from the fact that the biggest part of our country is under sea level.
Neder means under so that’s not strange at all
Not from Austria, but I think it has something to do with Latin again. Latin for ‘Österreich’ is Austria. I’m not 100% sure, but I think it derives from Latin ‘auster’ meaning ‘south’, which would explain why it is so close to ‘australis’ (meaning ‘southern’). So the Latin name refers to it as a southern region (probably in relation to other German speaking regions), while the German name would suggest it is an eastern area. Depends on your point of view, I guess.
And the point I’m making is your are a 'Nederlander"? That’s exactly the question I am asking!
That seems not to be the case. Austria should be just the latinization of Osterreich, without any reference to the “auster/australis” with the meaning of south/southern. The similarity should just be a coincidence. But that’s just speculation.
Osterreich, in fact, means eastern territory.
Well, as I said, I’m not sure about it. But then many names for European regions and languages stem from the descriptions of these areas by ancient Romans. With the Latin versions often being the ‘original’ names. I know this is the case for Cologne: The city was called ‘Colonia Claudia Ara Agrippinensis’ in ancient Roman times, or ‘Colonia’ for short. That can still be seen in the English name, obviously, while not as obviously in the German ‘Köln’.
Back to Austria: It could very well be that Romans referred to the area as the southern most part in which a certain language (which would later be called German) was spoken. I’d have to check on that, of course.
edit: So I brushed up on my ethymology: Turns out we’re both right. Apparently there used to be a term *austra that in indoeuropean (the original, forgotten language from which almost all european languages derive) referred to the first cardinal direction. There was some confusion wether this was the direction where the sun rises (= east) or where the sun reaches its highest point (= south). Therefore derivations from ‘austra’ in different languages can refer to east as well as south - depending on the language that is used.