RE: Place names in foreign languages (was: Re: Peking/Beijing (Re

From: G. Adam Stanislav (
Date: Mon Oct 11 1999 - 14:12:30 EDT

At 02:02 11-10-1999 -0700, wrote:
>I totally agree with Karl. For instance, the fact that Italian and other
>languages have their own traditional names for German and French cities
>(e.g. Mainz=Magonza, Aachen=Aquisgrana, Frankfurt=Francoforte,
>München=Monaco, Toulouse=Tolosa, Paris=Parigi, Nice=Nizza,
>Marseille=Marsiglia, Lyon=Lione, etc.) witnessess of the importance that
>these cities have, or had in the past.

Same holds true for Slovak. We have our own names for Rome, Viena, Venice,
Paris, etc, as well as for various contries.

By the same token, the capital of Slovakia, Bratislava, is known as
Pressburg in Austria, Pozsony in Hungary, and has the ancient name
Istropolis (Greek) as well as Posonium (Latin). There are Slovak folk songs
that refer to it as Presporok (with a caron over the s, pronounced as 'sh'
in English). In some ancient manuscripts it is referred to as Braslav.
Heck, in 1918 some people were seriously trying to officially name it
Wilson! They wanted to do that out of the allegiance of the then newly
formed, and now no longer existing, Czechoslovakia to the US whose
President at the time was Wilson.

Besides, Slovakia itself is called Slovensko in Slovak. I believe that
Slovenia is also called Slovensko in Slovenian, so if we insisted on
calling every place by its local name, we would suddenly end up with two
countries having the same name, perhaps provoking rivalry between two
friendly nations.


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