The Fascinating History Behind Different Country Names

It’s interesting to think that we can grow up in a country and actually know so little about it. Each country has so much history and so many stories to tell, and even the individual names of countries often have rather interesting origin stories. Have you ever wondered why Brazil is called Brazil, for example? Have you ever visited another nation somewhere around the world and asked yourself how the name originally came about? There are some very intriguing etymological tales behind many national names. Read on to learn just a few of them.


It’s a commonly known confusion that Greenland isn’t really very green at all, while its neighboring nation of Iceland is actually more green than icy. There’s actually a rather fascinating tale behind how these names came about. Allegedly, a Viking named “Erik the Red” discovered Greenland back in the year 985.



He’d also visited Iceland, and seen that it was much more suitable for colonization. He, therefore, decided to trick people by naming Greenland (Grfnland in Norwegian) and sending them there in the hope that he could keep Iceland for himself. Scientists have discovered, however, that back in those days, Greenland would have been a lot greener than it is now.

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