Toponyms with the same meaning

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Senior Member
There are different placenames in different countries (sometimes in the same country) meaning the same thing, literally or essentially, e.g.
new city: Carthago / Neapolis / Novgorod (literally)
white: Alba / Leuca / Belgrade (essentially)
strength: Potenza(Potentia) / Valencia(Valentia) (synonymous)
Polichne(Πολίχνη) / Urbino (Urbinum) (Polichne definitely diminutive of polis, Urbinum very likely diminutive of urbs)
Oxford/Bosporus (disputed)

Please add the ones you know of.
  • Mori.cze

    Senior Member
    I believe the suggested town names are quite common, from Czech republic I can add
    “Nové Město” -- New Town and “Nová Ves” -- New Village (both several times),
    “Bělá” -- White,
    “Vesec” -- Little Village (I've also noticed common French “Villars”, which I believe has the same meaning)
    but nothing comes to mind for strength and also nothing to compare to Ox-ford (but there is German Ford/Ford of Havlíček, Czech Ford and Iron Ford).

    Another example: there are Czech towns “Hradec Králové” -- Queen's Castle, “Dvůr Králové” -- Queen's Court, and “Králův Dvůr” -- King's Court, which could be compared e.g. to Kaliningrad/Königsberg -- King's Castle

    Edit: Stupid me overedited and got it wrong, thanks Ilocas for correction
    Last edited:



    new city: Novigrad

    new town/village: Novo mjesto, Nova vas, Nova ves

    white city/town: Biograd, Bjelovar, Belovar

    king's city/town/village: Kraljevac, Kraljevec

    "region behind the mountain": Zagorje, Zagora

    "region on this side of the mountain": Prigorje

    city: Gradec, Gradac

    old town: Stari grad

    vineyard: Gorica

    castle: grad, kaštel
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    Senior Member

    Uusikaupunki = new town
    Valkeala = white place or possibly place with fires (< valkea = white; fire, campfire; -la = suffix to derive words meaning a place)
    Kotka = eagle -- L'Aquila in Italy


    Senior Member
    Germany (just a few examples)

    New city, new town --> Neustadt (this name can be found all over Germany)
    New village --> Neudorf (standard German, all over the country), Niendorf, Niendorp (Low German, in the north)
    White --> Weißenburg (white castle), Weißensee (white lake), Wittenburg (Low German, white castle), Wittenberge (Low German, white mountains), Byhleguhre (derived from Lower Sorbian Běła Góra, white mountain)
    -ford: Frankfurt (two cities); there are other town names ending in -furt in the southern regions of Germany but I'm not sure if the etymology is the same


    but there is German Ford, Ford of Havlíček
    this is one and the same town, until 1945 it had name Německý Brod (German Ford), then it was renamed to Havlíčkův Brod (Havlíček's Ford), the funny thing is that it was in the part of Czechlands inhabited by Czechs (1930 census - 10 506 'Czechoslovaks', 142 Germans)

    edit: off topic note - I wrote one post in this forum when I was in Havlíčkův Brod
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    Senior Member
    I can now remember only Theresienstadt (the German name of the Czech Terezín [also former Nazi concentration camp] --- Terézváros [in Budapest]
    But I am sure there might be more....
    New city/town: «Νεάπολις» [neˈapolis] (fem.) in formal speech, «Νεάπολη» [neˈapoli] (fem.) in the vernacular.
    Old city/town: «Παλαιόπολις» [paleˈopolis] (fem.) in formal speech, «Παλαιόπολη» [paleˈopoli] (fem.) in the vernacular; Old Castle is usually «Παλιόκαστρο» [paˈʎokastro] (neut.), or «Παλαιόκαστρο» [paleˈokastro] (neut.).
    City/town/village behind the mountain: «Ζαγορά» [zaɣoˈɾa] (fem.), and «Ζαγόρι» [zaˈɣoɾi] (neut.); the former is a Thessalian town on Mount Pelion, named thusly by the Slavic settlers who inhabited eastern Thessaly in late 7th-early 8th c. CE (the town's previous name was «Μύραι» Μúrai). The latter is a town in Epirus with the pre-Slavic name of «Παροραία» Părŏraíā (fem.). What's interesting is that the Slavic name is probably calqued after the Greek one.
    Hill town/Hilltown/Gorica: There are two towns named «Γορίτσα» [ɣoˈɾit͡sa] (fem.) < vulgar Slavic name Gorica for mountain/hill, one in Thessaly, one in Epirus.
    Eaglenest/Eagle's Nest: «Αετοφωλιά» [a.etofoˈʎa] (fem.).
    Yekaterinburg (Екатеринбург): «Κατερίνη» [kateˈrini] (fem.), its formal name is «Αικατερίνη» [ekateˈɾini] (fem.). The Russian town is named after Peter the Great's wife, tsaritsa Yekaterina though, while the Greek town is named after St. Catherine.
    I'm sure there are dozens, if not hundreds, more.


    Senior Member
    Here's something that should be a coincidence.

    There's a place in Turkey called Gordium (or Gordion).

    There is a tale about Alexander The Great coming to this town to cut down a Gordion Knot with his sword.

    In Turkish Kördüğüm means "gordion knot".

    Kör: blind
    düğüm: unsolvable knot


    Senior Member
    In Romance nations toponyms meaning 'new town' are widespread. In Portuguese Vila Nova, in Spanish Villanueva, in Catalan Vilanova, in French Villeneuve, in Italian Villanova, etc.

    In Catalonia at least there are many toponyms which include mont 'mount', such as Montblanc 'white mountain', Montnegre 'black mountain', Mont-roig 'red mountain', Montsant 'holy mountain', Montserrat 'sawed mountain', Montgat 'cat's mountain'...

    Other toponyms include castell 'castle', pobla 'town, village', riu 'river', torre 'tower' or vall 'valley'.
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