Have you ever wondered where countries get their names from? Some countries are named after popular people who either discovered them or were a respected personality in the area while others are named after geographical features. Still, other countries are named after an indigenous group or tribe, famous cities, or a historical event. The number of words in country names vary from one country to the other with countries such as the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and The Independent and the Sovereign Republic of Kiribati having some of the longest names. About 15 countries have nine-letter names. These countries are not restricted to a particular region but are spread worldwide. Some of the 9 letter country names and the meaning of their names are as discussed below.
One of the most famous country names with nine letters is Argentina. The South American country is located in the southern part of the continent and is the 8th largest country in the world. The English name “Argentina” is derived from the Spanish language but the name itself is Italian meaning “silver colored.”
Australia comprises of one main island and several other smaller islands in Oceania. The country derived its name from Latin words “Terra Australis” meaning “southern land.” The name has been used since the ancient time to refer to the continent in the Southern Hemisphere.
Indonesia is located between the Pacific and the Indian Oceans. It has more than 17,000 islands. The name “Indonesia” is derived from the Greek name “Indos” and word “nesos” which collectively mean “Indian Islands.” The name predates the formation of independent Indonesia.
Macedonia is one of the successor states of Yugoslavia and a country in Southeast Europe. It was admitted to the UN under the name “the former Yugoslavia Republic of Macedonia” due to the dispute with Greece over the use of the name “Macedonia.” The country derives its name from the Greek word “Makedonia,” a kingdom that was named after the ancient Macedonians. The name probably meant “the tall ones” or highlander” in reference to the people.
Nicaragua is Central America isthmus’ largest country. It is bordered by both the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean, Honduras, and Costa Rica. Its capital, Managua, is the 3rd largest city in Central America. Several theories have been put forward to explain the origin of the name “Nicaragua.” One of the theories suggests that the name may have been coined from the name “Nicarao” who is said to be the chieftain of an indigenous tribe that was encountered by the Spanish during their entry into the region in 1522. Thus the name “Nicaragua” was formed from “Nicarao” and “agua” which is a Spanish word for “water” in reference for the water bodies in the country.
Long Official Names
The number of letters in these countries’ official names depend whether they are republics of kingdoms. Most of the republics like Cape Verde, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Indonesia, and San Marino have 19 letters in their names. Argentina, which is officially known as the Argentine Republic has 17 letters. Swaziland and Australia, officially known as the Kingdom of Eswati and Australia Commonwealth of Australia respectively are 17 and 23 letters long.