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Country Name Etymologies #1

We describe the origin of the country name. You guess the country.
Answer must correspond to yellow box
Quiz by Quizmaster
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Last updated: June 15, 2019
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First submittedJune 17, 2013
Times taken112,168
Average score54.5%
Rating4.96
4:00
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 / 22 guessed
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Hint
Country
"Land of the Franks"
France
"White Russia"
Belarus
"The Savior" in Spanish
El Salvador
"Low lands"
Netherlands
Named after Christopher Columbus
Colombia
Describes its position at the south
of a continent
South Africa
Named after Simón Bolívar
Bolivia
"Land of the Aryans"
Iran
"Rich Coast" in Spanish
Costa Rica
Based on Marco Polo's rendering
of "Sun Origin"
Japan
From the Latin word for "Free"
Liberia
Hint
Country
Taken from the Latin for "Southern"
Australia
Incorrectly called "Land of the Moors"
Mauritania
From the Greek for "small islands"
F. S. Micronesia
Named after a province in
the Netherlands
New Zealand
"Land of the Indus River"
India
"Black Mountain" in Venetian
Montenegro
Named after the Biblical figure Jacob
Israel
Named after King Philip II of Spain
Philippines
Means "Lion City"
Singapore
Combines Tanganyika and Zanzibar
Tanzania
Name "Little Venice" by
Amerigo Vespucci
Venezuela
89 Comments
+8
Level 93
Jun 18, 2013
I kept trying to put in Central African Republic instead of South Africa. Perhaps it needs to accept both.
+24
Level ∞
Jun 18, 2013
Changed the clue to rule out CAR. Thanks.
+3
Level 93
Jul 24, 2013
five stars
+1
Level 55
Sep 29, 2017
it says south of the continent
+39
Level 51
Sep 29, 2017
Didn't when dwo wrote his comment. That's why QM changed it.
+9
Level 70
Sep 25, 2019
It says "changed the clue"
+2
Level 57
May 17, 2021
Still, the CAR is not in the south of a continent. So dwo's comment doesn't make sense.
+19
Level 76
May 23, 2021
The hint used to be different. I would assume the clue used to be something like ''Describes its position in the continent'' or something.
+21
Level 66
Nov 9, 2021
GeoMan, they JUST explained why...
+1
Level 66
Jul 24, 2013
Fun quiz.
+2
Level 82
Jul 24, 2013
neat idea for a quiz but I think there are a lot of countries with more interesting etymologies you could have included. Maybe in the next one...
+1
Level 82
Nov 18, 2015
I must have forgotten I had taken this quiz when I did another one on the same subject. here

Doubled up on many of the same answers but included a few others missing from this one.

+1
Level 79
Sep 25, 2019
Likewise here: https://www.jetpunk.com/user-quizzes/108179/country-name-etymology-2
+2
Level 74
Jul 24, 2013
Cool quiz idea. Could have used another minute to think of the last few.
+1
Level 75
Jul 24, 2013
Good quiz
+18
Level 53
Jul 24, 2013
Definitely needs more time, but great quiz. For "The Land Of The Aryans" I was trying just about every Nordic/northern European country, going on the lines of the Nazi 'Aryan Race' ideology... was a liiittle far off
+2
Level 72
Sep 4, 2016
You and me both!
+3
Level 74
Jun 26, 2022
To blow your mind just a little bit more, "Caucasian" is associated with the Caucasus mountains :)
+1
Level 59
Jul 24, 2013
Excellent quiz! Needs more time, Very interesting though.
+1
Level 27
Jan 23, 2014
Great quiz. Please make another three!!!! :)
+1
Level 83
Jun 3, 2014
wow, did shockingly bad. Will have to come back and try again sometime!
+1
Level 75
Jul 24, 2015
Great quiz. I missed six, and when I saw the answers for five of those it seemed so obvious I wanted to smack myself. I would have never gotten Singapore, though.
+1
Level 78
Nov 18, 2015
Doesn't the clue for Australia work for Austria too?
+12
Level 92
Nov 18, 2015
Nope. Similar as they are in English, Austria comes from the German Österreich, which means Eastern reach or realm.
+2
Level 70
Mar 22, 2020
We should call Australia Sudria or Sutria ;)
+1
Level 65
Nov 18, 2015
+2
Level 58
Mar 22, 2020
The video you cited literally says Singapore means "Lion city".
+1
Level 35
Nov 19, 2015
I wrote Micronesia but it wasn't accepted.
+1
Level 63
Nov 19, 2015
Spelling options for Mauritania? (not even sure I got that right...)
+3
Level 22
Nov 25, 2015
How is Israel named after the Biblical figure Jacob?
+11
Level 83
Dec 6, 2015
He was later called Israel.
+7
Level 82
Jul 31, 2021
"Jacob was the founder of a whole new nation

Thanks to the number of children he had

He was also known as Israel, but most of the time

His sons and his wives used to call him Dad."

Thank you, Andrew Lloyd Webber.

+4
Level 55
Aug 10, 2022
Love it. But Tim Rice wrote the lyrics.
+1
Level 29
Sep 30, 2021
Maybe, learn his story before you say this
+1
Level 47
Oct 4, 2021
Why? He got his answer readily enough without needing his life story.
+1
Level 76
Sep 30, 2021
A name given to him that meant something like "he struggles with god," after an incident one night in a tent. Or so I remember - accurately or otherwise.
+1
Level 63
May 4, 2023
And I kept thinking that Jacob is another version of James, so Jamaica must be the answer. Nope.
+1
Level 73
Oct 15, 2016
If you like this one, try these by joez. http://www.jetpunk.com/user-quizzes/170770/capital-city-etymologies and http://www.jetpunk.com/user-quizzes/170770/capital-cities-name-etymologies-2
+2
Level 61
Feb 7, 2017
Missed out on Belarus because I thought it was spelled Belorus.

Maybe add it as an alternative spelling?

+8
Level 58
Sep 30, 2021
Yeah! Why not accept all kinds of different spellings for each country so people don't need to learn the proper spelling? Or you could just learn that it's in fact spelled "Belarus". Which is more simple?
+4
Level 74
Jun 26, 2022
Zoiks. It's a knowledge quiz, not a spelling quiz. There are all kinds of reasons that alternative type-ins are accepted; it's standard practice on JetPunk. Some folks know all the answers but can't spell them; sometimes it's medical, sometimes not. Some folks are typing on phones on moving trains. Some folks speak multiple languages but English might not be their first language. (I'm also giggling at the irony of the notion of "proper" spelling for a name of a country that is transliterated from another language.) Live a little @Nullum.
+1
Level 68
Mar 9, 2017
Enjoyable quiz, thanks. Needed a bit more time to think.
+1
Level 74
May 23, 2017
Surprised so many people got Montenegro...
+2
Level 33
May 23, 2017
Australia comes from southern ''land'' (terra australis), not just southern
+7
Level 67
Mar 17, 2021
The land part is terra, the southern is australis. No need to add land.
+7
Level 89
Jul 17, 2018
Peasy. There's always someone to brag how easy it was for himself as everyone else struggled. I am he. Let the pretenders utter their false time stamps and ages in reply, but I found this the peasiest of the easy.
+3
Level 70
Jan 14, 2019
Most were easy. But anyone else first tried morocco for the moor question and sudan (sud) for the south ?

I dont think no matter how much more time I would ve gotten i would have gotten israel or singapore.

+1
Level 70
Jul 7, 2019
Missed the same two again... I am amazed though at how extremely low the scores were for everything below 40% ( besides the two I mentioned) T o me they all seem quite self explanatory.
+1
Level 60
Aug 6, 2023
That's hilarious! I did the same.

Some of my other answers that I find reasonable are Frankfurt for "Land of the Franks", Argentina ("Aryentina") for "Land of the Aryans", Libreville for "Free", and Sierra Leone for "Lion City".

+3
Level 51
Sep 7, 2019
Iranians(=Persians) consider themselves europeans, and rightly so, since they came from eastern europe via russia to iran.

Thus they have high pride, but 2 shameful historical events, invasion by non-europeans, the arabs and the mongols.

Especially the Arab one was huge, as they had to adopt their language to a huge extent, and more importantly their religion.

When I worked in Tehran, my colleagues, and mansion owner, doctor used to say these things. Most common people like america as well.

+1
Level 64
Oct 1, 2021
What makes someone a European?
+3
Level 62
Oct 1, 2021
By that logic we're all Africans.
+2
Level 74
Jun 26, 2022
@takmike no Iranians I know consider themselves European, except those who are part of the diaspora and living in Europe; this is not some universal sentiment as you claim. It's rather silly to generalize about 80 million people; your sample size is far too small, regardless of any 'expertise' you may have acquired working in Tehran. It's also silly to claim that the Caucasus is squarely in Europe, which I'm guessing is what you're trying to say with your comments about historical migration. Iran has dozens of ethnic groups; claiming they all came from Europe would probably be news to them XD
+1
Level 76
May 4, 2023
Umm, takmike, no. But you have provided a useful example of living somewhere not providing an adequate antidote to batshit crazy notions about that place.
+3
Level 63
Sep 25, 2019
Belarus is White Rus, not white Russia
+1
Level 69
Sep 28, 2020
But the name Russia comes from the name Rus as well.
+6
Level 89
Sep 25, 2019
Yes, Mauritania is incorrectly referred to as the Land of the Moors. It should be correctly referred to as the Land of the Moops! ;)
+1
Level 67
Mar 17, 2021
Kids today won't get that reference, and that makes me so sad.
+2
Level 33
Oct 7, 2021
19 and get it
+6
Level 71
Sep 25, 2019
Good quiz! Although I believe it's "Land of the Moops".
+2
Level 60
Sep 25, 2019
Montenegro is the strongest country in the world as it can say the n word.
+1
Level 37
Sep 26, 2019
I thought that new zealand was named after the island of zealand in denmark. you learn something new every day
+1
Level 60
Aug 10, 2021
Don't get me wrong, I don't want to insult you. But why would you think that? You often think of Denmark as one of the big explores and colonisers? Just curious.
+2
Level 64
Oct 1, 2021
Danish Empire was larger than the Dutch :/
+1
Level 45
Jan 19, 2020
A slightly harder version of this quizz woud be nice. Without the names, for example. This is fun though.
+2
Level 70
Mar 22, 2020
Without which names, the clues or the answers?? How would you know what to type?? That would be just name a random country wouldnt it
+3
Level 68
Aug 24, 2020
I always think "Sierra Leone" for Lion City
+3
Level 81
Mar 23, 2021
..although I'm sure you know it comes from Lion Mountains or Mountain Range of lions...
+2
Level 68
Dec 29, 2021
Yeah
+3
Level 73
Sep 19, 2021
What a delightful quiz, probably my favorite one so far as combines geography and languages. Thank you so much.
+1
Level 79
Sep 30, 2021
A second version. https://www.jetpunk.com/user-quizzes/108179/country-name-etymology-2
+6
Level 58
Sep 30, 2021
"Montenegro" is not even Italian, it's Venetian.
+2
Level 46
Sep 30, 2021
I confirm because i'm venetian and in italian "black Mountain" is "Monte Nero" and not "monte negro"
+2
Level 76
Sep 30, 2021
Didn't know that about Venezuela. Initially tried Slovenia, which didn't make any sense, except for proximity and the "ven".
+3
Level 58
Sep 30, 2021
The etymology of Japan is straight up incorrect. Comes from the Malay "Jepang" which was taken into Europe as "Zipangu", has basically nothing to do with Marco Polo
+3
Level 55
Sep 30, 2021
Missed my own country, damn it
+1
Level 16
May 3, 2022
this is surprisingly interesting
+1
Level 55
Aug 10, 2022
I thought Zealand was in Denmark?
+1
Level 74
May 4, 2023
Yes, the island of Zealand is in Denmark. However, there is also the province of Zeeland in the Netherlands. Zeeland was sometimes spelled Zealand in English and that's where New Zealand derives its name.
+1
Level 46
Aug 12, 2022
Taken from the Latin for "Southern" is not correct for Australia
+1
Level 68
May 4, 2023
Terra australis is the full latin term, but who cares? I got it anyway.
+3
Level 49
Aug 18, 2022
Montenegro is not from Italian, since black in italian is "nero" not "negro". I had to google this a while ago since Montenegrins themself calls their country Crna Gora, also meaning black mountain in serbocroatian. But the word montenegro, was it spanish maybe? Sounded weird since Spain is far away from the Balkans.

Turns out the word Montenegro is from the old Venetian language, since the city state of Venice ruled big parts of the Adriatic sea back in the days.

+2
Level ∞
Apr 8, 2023
Changed from Italian to Venetian for Montenegro.
+2
Level 53
Apr 3, 2023
i genuinely feel sorry for the 10% that didnt get france
+1
Level 71
May 4, 2023
A fascinating quiz. I learnt several things. Thank you.
+2
Level 74
May 4, 2023
Great quiz! Interestingly, Micronesia and Maldives both come from "small islands", but micronesia is of Greek origin and Maldives from Sanskrit.
+1
Level 84
May 4, 2023
What would a clue for Bahamas look like and how different would it be from the one for Netherlands?
+1
Level 68
May 4, 2023
21/22, just missed Australia. I was thinking about it but I didn't try it since I had tried it for some other ones and then I ran out of time
+1
Level 68
May 4, 2023
fun quiz, 100%