List of Latin place names in the Balkans

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Latin Place Names
by country
Africa
Asia
Europe
by type
Cities
Countries
Islands
Lakes
Mountains
Regions
Rivers

This list includes countries and regions in the current common definition of the Balkan Peninsula that were part of the Roman Empire, or that were given Latin place names in historical references.

Background[edit]

Until the Modern Era, Latin was the common language for scholarship and mapmaking. During the 19th and 20th centuries, German scholars in particular have made significant contributions to the study of historical place names, or Ortsnamenkunde. These studies have, in turn, contributed to the study of genealogy. For genealogists and historians of pre-Modern Europe, knowing alternate names of places is vital to extracting information from both public and private records. Even specialists in this field point out, however, that the information can be easily taken out of context, since there is a great deal of repetition of place names throughout Europe; reliance purely on apparent connections should therefore be tempered with valid historical methodology.

Caveats and notes[edit]

Latin place names are not always exclusive to one place – for example, there were several Roman cities whose names began with Colonia and then a more descriptive term. During the Middle Ages, these were often shortened to just Colonia. One of these, Colonia Agrippinensis, retains the name today in the form of Cologne.

Early sources for Roman names show numerous variants and spellings of the Latin names.

The modern canonical name is listed first. Sources are listed chronologically. In general, only the earliest source is shown for each name, although many of the names are recorded in more than one of the sources. Where the source differs in spelling, or has other alternatives, these are listed following the source. As an aid to searching, variants are spelled completely, and listed in most likely chronology.

Superscripts indicate:

  1. Latinized form of the Greek-derived name.
  2. Latinized form of the Asian-derived name via Greek.
  3. Altered Latinized form of the Greek-derived name.

Cities and towns in Albania[edit]

Canonical Latin Name (source(s): variant(s)) English Name (native language(s)) - older name(s), (other language(s)), location(s)
Amantia Amantia
Antigonea Gjirokastër
Antipatrea Berat
Apollonia Fier
Aulona Vlorë
Buthrotum Butrint
Bylis Bylis
Dyrrhachium (2PG15: Epidaurus) Durrës
Lissus (2PG15) Lezhë - Lyssos
Scodra (2PG15) Shkodër - Shkodra - Scutari
Terranda Tirana
Valebona Tropojë

Cities and towns in Bosnia and Herzegovina[edit]

Canonical Latin Name (source(s): variant(s)) English Name (native language(s)) - older name(s), (other language(s)), location(s)
Aquae Sulphurae Ilidža
Neuense Neum
Pelva Livno - Ludricensis
Saloniana (2PG15) Mostar - Vitrinica
Salvia (2PG15), Salvium Glamoč
Serbinum, Servitium Gradiška

Cities and towns in Bulgaria[edit]

Canonical Latin Name (source(s): variant(s)) English Name (native language(s)) - older name(s), (other language(s)), location(s)
Abritum, Abrittus Razgrad
Aetus, Astus, Idus, Aquilia Aytos
Almus, Artanus Lom
Anchialus Pomorie
Apollonia Pontica, Appolonia Magna, Antheia, Sozopolis Sozopol
Augusta Traiana, Augustra Trajana Stara Zagora
Aurea Zlatitsa
Bononia Vidin
Copsis Karlovo
Debeltum, Pyrgus Burgas
Diocletianopolis Hisarya
Dionysopolis Balchik
Diospolis Yambol
Durostorum Silistra
Escus, Oescus Gigen
Germanea Separeva Banya
Magura Piatra, Regianum, Camistrum, Augusta Kozloduy
Marcianopolis Devnya
Melta, Praesidium, Caesaria Lovech
Menebria, Mesembria, Metropolis Nova Nesebar
Montana, Municipium Montanensium Montana
Nicopolis Nikopol
Nicopolis ad Istrum Nikyup (20 km north of Veliko Tarnovo)
Nicopolis ad Nestum, Neurocopia Gotse Delchev, Nevrokop
Novae Svishtov
Odessus¹ Varna
Pautalia Kyustendil
Peronticus, Agathopolis Ahtopol
Ratiaria Archar
Scaptopara Blagoevgrad
Serdica Sofia
Sexaginta Prista Ruse
Stenimachus Asenovgrad
Stipum Ihtiman
Storgosia Pleven
Trimontium, Philippopolis Plovdiv
Ulpia Oescus, Palatiolum Gigen
Valve Vratsa

Cities and towns in Croatia[edit]

Canonical Latin Name (source(s): variant(s)) English Name (native language(s)) - older name(s), (other language(s)), location(s)
Aenona (2PG15) Nin (Nona)
Aequum (2PG15) Čitluk, near Sinj Split-Dalmatia County
Albona Labin (Albona)
Andautonia Ščitarjevo near Zagreb
Aqua Balissae Daruvar
Aqua Viva Varaždin
Aquama Čakovec
Bona Blagaj
Cibalae Vinkovci
Epidaurus (2PG15), Epidauros Cavtat
Flanona (2PG15) Plomin (Fianona)
Flumen Rijeka (Fiume), (Terra Fluminis Sancti Viti)
Iadera (2PG15: Iader) Zadar (Zara)
Issa (2PG15) Vis (Lissa)
Lopsica (2PG15) Sveti Juraj
Marsonia Slavonski Brod
Mursa Osijek
Narona (2PG15) Vid, near Metković
Neapolis-Aemonia Novigrad (Cittanova)
Nesactium Vizače
Oneum (2PG15: Onaeum) Omiš
Parentium Poreč (Parenzo)
Petina Pićan (Pedena)
Pharus Hvar (Lesina)
Piquentum Buzet (Pinguente)
Pola Pula (Pola), Pulj
Ragusa Dubrovnik (Ragusa)
Rocium (or Rotium) Roč (Rozzo)
Salona (2PG15) Solin (Salona)
Scardona (2PG15) Skradin
Senia (2PG15) Senj (Segna, Zengg)
Siscia Sisak
Spalatum Split (Spalato)
Tarsatica (2PG15) Trsat (Tersatto) (near Rijeka)
Tragurion (2PG15: Tragurium) Trogir (Traù)
Vegium Karlobag

Cities and towns in Greece[edit]

Canonical Latin Name (source(s): variant(s)) English Name (native language(s)) - older name(s), (other language(s)), location(s)
Acharnae¹ Acharnes, Menidi
Aegina Aegina
Agrinium¹ Agrinio - Agrinion
Alexandropolis¹ Alexandroupolis
Almyrus¹ Almyros
Amphilochia¹ Amphilochia
Amphipolis¹ Amphipolis
Amphissa¹ Amphissa - Amfissa
Argos¹ Argos
Atalanta Atalante - Atalanta
Athenae¹ Athens
Berroea Verroia - Berrea
Carystus¹ Carystos - Carystus
Cenchreae¹ Kechries - Cenchreae, near Corinth
Chalcis¹ Chalkida, Euboea
Corcyra³ Corfu
Corinthus¹ Corinth
Delphi¹ Delphi
Dodona¹ Dodona
Eleusis¹ Eleusis
Epidaurus¹ Epidaurus
Gythium Gytheion
Heraclium¹ Iraklion - rarely Heraclion, Crete
Isthmia¹ Isthmia, slightly east of Corinth
Laurium, (Thoricum before mid-1st century BC) Laurium - Laurion
Leucas Lefkada - Lefkas - Leucas
Marathon, Marathonis¹ Marathon
Megalopolis¹ Megalopolis
Megara Megara, west of Athens
Mycenae Mycenae (Mykênes, Mykênai)
Naupactus Na(u)fpaktos
Nauplium¹ Na(u)fplion
Nemea¹ Nemea
Nicopolis¹ Nicopolis
Nova Ionia (Athenae) Nea Ionia - New Ionia, Athens
Nova Ionia (Thessalia) Nea Ionia - New Ionia, Thessaly
Olympia¹ Olympia
Olympias¹ Olympias - Olympiada
Orchomenos¹ Orchomenus[disambiguation needed]
Paeania¹ Paiania - Paeania
Patrae¹, Ares Patrensis Patras
Phalerum Phaleron - Faliron
Philippi Philippi
Piraeus Piraeus
Potidaea¹ Potidaea - Potidaia
Salamis¹ Salamis
Sparta¹ Sparta
Tegea Tegea, near Tripoli
Thebae (Boeotia/Athenae) Theva - Thebes
Thermopylae¹ Thermopylae
Thessalonica, Salonica¹ Thessaloniki, Saloniki - Salonika, Makedonia
Tripolis Tripoli
Troezen, Troezena¹ Troezen
Uranopolis¹ Uranopoli - some prefer Uranopolis
Zycanthus, Zacynthus¹ Zante - Zakynthos

Cities and towns in Macedonia[edit]

Canonical Latin Name (source(s): variant(s)) English Name (native language(s)) - older name(s), (other language(s)), location(s)
Monasterium Bitola
Scopium, Scupium Skopje
Stibo, Estipium Štip

Cities and towns in Montenegro[edit]

Canonical Latin Name (source(s): variant(s)) English Name (native language(s)) - older name(s), (other language(s)), location(s)
Acruvium Kotor
Anagastum, Anderva, Anderba Nikšić
Antipargal (Antibarium, 10th century) Bar
Birziminium Podgorica (Titograd, Ribnica)
Colchinium, Olcinium, Ulcinium Ulcinj
D(i)oclea Duklja
Rhizon (2PG15: Rhisium), Rhizinium, Risinium Risan

Cities and towns in Romania[edit]

Canonical Latin Name (source(s): variant(s)) English Name (native language(s)) - older name(s), (other language(s)), location(s)
Abruttus Abrud
Aegyssus Tulcea
Ad Aquas Călan
Ad Mediam Mehadia
Ad Pannonios Teregova
Ad Stoma Breţcu
Alburnus Maior Roşia Montană
Altinum Oltina
Ampelum Zlatna
Angustia Râşnov
Apulum Alba Iulia
Arcidava Vărădia
Arrubium Măcin
Arutela Călimaneşti
Bersobis, Berzobis Berzovia
Brucla Aiud
Calatis, Callatis Mangalia (Tomisovara), (Panglicara, Pangalia)
Caput Stenarum Boiţa
Carsium Hârşova
Centum Putea Surducu Mare
Cibinum Sibiu, Sibiu County
Colonia Ulpia Traiana Sarmizegetusa
Dierna Orşova
Drobeta Drobeta-Turnu Severin
Forum Novum Siculorum Târgu-Mureş, Mureş County
Germisara Geoagiu
Iassium Iaşi
Media Mediaş, Sibiu County
Micia Veţel
Napoca, Claudiopolis Cluj-Napoca
Noviodunum Isaccea, Tulcea County
Porolissum Moigrad
Potaissa Turda
Praetorium Copăceni, Vâlcea County
Resculum Bologa
Romula-Malva Reşca Dobrosloveni
Salinae Ocna Mureş
Sucidava Celei
Tapae Poarta de Fier a Transilvaniei
Temesiensis Timişoara, Timiş County
Tibiscum Jupa, Caraş-Severin
Tomis Constanţa
Troesmis Igliţa (Turcoaia)
Ulmetum Pantelimonul de Sus, Constanţa County
Varadinum Oradea

Cities and towns in Rumelia (Turkey)[edit]

Canonical Latin Name (source(s): variant(s)) English Name (native language(s)) - older name(s), (other language(s)), location(s)
Adrianopolis Edirne - Adrianople
Byzantium Istanbul, Constantinople
Constantinopolis Istanbul, Constantinople
Roma Nova Istanbul, Constantinople

Cities and towns in Serbia[edit]

Canonical Latin Name (source(s): variant(s)) English Name (native language(s)) - older name(s), (other language(s)), location(s)
Acumincum Stari Slankamen - Slankamen
Bassianae Donji Petrovci
Bononia Banoštor
Burgenae Novi Banovci
Cusum Petrovaradin
Lederata Rama
Naissus Niš
Neoplanta Novi Sad
Remesiana Bela Palanka
Rittium Surduk
Semendria Smederevo
Singidunum Belgrade (Beograd)
Sirmium Sremska Mitrovica
Taurunum Zemun
Ulpiana Lipljan
Viminacium (2PG15: Iminacium) Kostolac

Cities and towns in Slovenia[edit]

Canonical Latin Name (source(s): variant(s)) English Name (native language(s)) - older name(s), (other language(s)), location(s)
Ad Pirum Hrušica
Aegida, Capris, Caput Histriae Koper (Capodistria)
Arae Postumiae Postojna
Atrans Trojane
Carnium, Carnioburgum Kranj
Castra Ajdovščina
Celeia Celje
Emona, Aemona, Labacum Ljubljana
Lithopolis Kamnik
Longaticum Logatec
Marburgum Maribor
Nauportus Vrhnika
Neviodunum Drnovo
Poetovio Ptuj
Pyrrhanum Piran (Pirano)

See also[edit]

References[edit]

In order of likely publication:

  • PNH: Pliny (Gaius Plinius Secundus), Naturalis Historia; book "PNH" chapter (that is, "37PNH81" instead of the usual "N.H.xxxvii.81").
  • PG: Ptolemy (Claudius Ptolemaeus), Geographia; book "PG" chapter (that is, "2PG3" instead of the usual "II.3"). Ptolemy wrote in Greek, so names are transliterated back into Latin to reveal the original form.

External links[edit]