Listen in Spanish
- A name or title.
- The action of giving a name to someone or something.
“I was confused at first by the passport stamp for ‘Deutschland,’ but I remembered that’s the local appellation for Germany.”
“My official appellation is Francesco, but everyone calls me Frankie.”
“I want to use the local appellation for every destination we travel to.”
French, mid-15th century
Why this word?
Have you traveled to the “Estados Unidos Mexicanos”? If you’ve taken a trip to Mexico, you have. The lengthier name is the official appellation of the country. The word “appellation” comes from the Latin verb “appellare,” meaning “to address.” We use the word for the action of giving something a name, such as naming a family pet, or in a grander, historical sense, naming a town or a country. We’ve given countries around the world appellations in English, but these nations have their own names in the local languages (and sometimes there are multiple). For example, the country Norway is called “Svalbard” in Norwegian, and India is called “Bhārat” in Hindi. Many languages are spoken in India, including Sanskrit and Bengali, so there are appellations for each language, but almost all of them are a variation on “Bhārat” with minor spelling changes.
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