When Shakespeare wrote, ""What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet," he was suggesting that names were unimportant, right? Call a rose a pig and it will still be just as beautiful?
Well, that's a message the Danes never received! You see, they did some clever thinking when naming their capital city. Copenhagen is actually a combination of two Danish words: Kobn---which means "merchant," and Havn---which means "harbor."
Now, why was that naming absolutely brilliant?
Because Denmark is a peninsula surrounded by water---and water was the number one method of travel during the Middle Ages and the Renaissance! Boats were literally everywhere, carrying people and goods from distant lands to new locations. And every time they looked at a map, they saw "Merchant Harbor" highlighted just off the coast of Denmark.
Sounds like an inviting destination for a vessel carrying a load of goods, doesn't it? Kind of like a big fat worm hanging on the end of a hook in front of the hungriest fish in the pond----or one of the greatest advertising campaigns since "Where's the Beef?" "Just Do It," and "Is It In You?"
Want to learn more about this harbor town?
Then check out this video:
Does your city or town's name have an interesting origin? Leave us a comment and tell us what it is! And join us again soon on Get Lost!
Bam Bam Bigelow
Image retrieved from http://www.travelblog.org/Wallpaper/pix/tb_copenhagen_denmark.jpg on September 15, 2007.