Sunday, 20 May 2018

Guinea Biseau Place Names Explained

Having blogged samples of my books on English place names and also examined the etymologies of the nations of the world and their respective capitals I thought it time I cast my net a little wider. As English place names share some links to other tongues it would be interesting to see if any of the elements contributing to our place names could be found elsewhere. Resuming the alphabetical tour of the world and a look at the largest of Guinea Biseau's settlements.

Bissau, a city named from the island on which the original settlement began, itself probably from the tribe who lived here, and who were named from their former chief. Alternatively it may be a corruption of Bijago, the name of the ethnic group inhabiting this region.

Cacheu is in the region of the Papel people and is a name of Baunuk origin in meaning 'the place where we rest'.

Farim took its name from the title of the local Mandinka people's ruler. Earlier it had been known as Tubabodaga 'the ville of the whites'.

Note the spellings of the places are English as the piece is written in English.

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