What Do Countries Name Themselves?

This is a world map of Endonyms written in either the official character set or the character set most prevalent in the location.


This map shows the names countries give themselves.  An endonym is a name used by a group or category of people to refer to themselves or their language, or their country,  as opposed to a name given to them by other groups. For example, Deutschland is the endonym of a country known in English as Germany and Finland is Suomen Tasavalta.  These names change with wars, upheavals, coups, or sometimes because the people simply decide to choose for themselves.

The map is quite controversial, as different groups exist within others, or are under debate for political or religious reasons.  Most of the data here comes from the United Nations Group of Experts on Geographic Names and the U.N.’s database of county names.

To view an interactive map which lets you focus more closely, visit here.

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