Etymology, or the origins of what words mean is something that I think we all can learn from. You may not think you care about it but if you’ve ever browsed online at baby name websites or flipped through a baby book of names and their meanings, you’ve been practicing etymology.
I love the idea of cartographers Stephan Holmes and Silke Peust to create maps with our modern-day cities but the meanings of names. Some great examples I discovered were Stinky Onions (Chicago), Place by the Meadows (Dallas) and Heraldswolf’s Stone (Boston).
There are some great closeups of the Atlas of True Names here. Can you spot your hometown? I can’t wait to pick up a copy and discover mine. For Tolkien and Harry Potter fans, they’ve also done one of the British Isles. The Atlas of True Names is available for purchase at MapsOnline.co.uk.
Blog Post: A map showing the original meanings of place names in North America by George Dvorsky