Nations That Begin With The Letter A

A number of the sounds people make are common. Based on researchers on the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics in Nijmegen, the Netherlands, just about everybody says ‘huh’? across the globe. This sound marks a query or a second of confusion throughout borders and is the primary “common phrase” studied by trendy linguists. 

Aside from delicate, questionable grunts, what else do a lot of our languages have in frequent? ‘Ah’s’ and ‘umm’s’ additionally appear to prime the record. In gentle of this, it’s considerably unsurprising to be taught there are a complete of 11 international locations and three territories on Earth that begin with the letter A. Here’s a fast have a look at the place every nation obtained its identify. 

The 11 Nations beginning with A:

The territories beginning with A:


 Kabul, Afghanistan. Picture credit score: Mushtaq B/Shutterstock

A landlocked nation situated between Iran, Pakistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, and China, Afghanistan has a reputation that’s historic. The phrase interprets to “Land of the Afghans.”  It’s mentioned the Pashtun individuals who dwell within the nation started calling themselves ‘Afghans’ in the course of the Islamic interval which dates from concerning the 12 months 800 to 1258. 

The phrase “Afghan” first seems in written historical past within the Hudud-al-Alam, a Tenth-century geography e book written in Persian, in 982. “Stan” means “land” or “nation” in Persian. And so, we have now “Afghanistan.” 

Folks have lived on the land that’s in the present day referred to as Afghanistan for about 100,000 years, and completely different settlements have been uncovered from the Bronze Age. It was dominated by the Achaemenids, Alexander the Nice, at the very least a part of it by the Greeks, and the Seleucid empire of Babylonia. Afghanistan handed by means of quite a few empires, kingdoms and princedoms, together with an invasion by Genghis Khan and the Mongolians. After present process a interval partially dominated by the British, it emerged as an unstable kingdom. In 1973, a army coup overthrew the monarchy, establishing the Republic of Afghanistan. At this time, the nation nonetheless struggles to seek out its footing amongst civil and political unrest, conflict, and poverty.


Tirana Metropolis, Albania. Picture credit score: RussieseO/Shutterstock

Present in Southeastern Europe, Albania is known for its seashores and delightful mountains. Lesser identified is the truth that the nation actually has two names. There may be one that’s used inside Albania, and the opposite, by outsiders. If you’re not from there, you doubtless know this nation by simply that label: Albania. Folks dwelling there name it Shqipà«ri, Shqipni, nevertheless. 

On a sensible entrance, it’s simple to see why most of the people exterior Albania doesn’t use the nation’s conventional identify because it’s troublesome to know simply learn how to pronounce it. Linguists say that Shqipà«ri, Shqipni has its roots within the interval of Ottoman rule, which occurred after some Albanian individuals moved into Italy and Greece. “Shqip” is considered the unique identify of the individuals’s language. The ethnic Albanian communities in Italy and Greece don’t use this identify.

The phrase “Albania” is taken into account to be the nation’s previous conventional identify. Texts from the sixteenth by means of 18th centuries name the nation Arbà«nà«. This phrase is claimed to return from the Latin phrase arvum which implies “farmland” or “subject,” in addition to the Greek phrase aroura which means “farmland.” 

The land in the present day identified (by foreigners) as Albania was dominated by the Greeks, the Romans, the Byzantines, and eventually the Ottomans. With the autumn of the Ottoman Empire, the land it occupied was divided by ambassadors from the nice powers of the time corresponding to Nice Britain, Germany, and Russia, however in doing so didn’t pay enough consideration to the ethnic and demographic realities of the realm, paving the way in which for future instability within the area with the rise and fall of the Yugoslavian state. Following World Conflict II, Albania was a communist nation till 1992, and it’s nonetheless present process democratic reform to today.


Algiers, Algeria. Picture credit score: Oguz Dikbakan/Shutterstock

On the northern fringe of Africa dealing with Spain throughout the ocean, Algeria is a rustic with an Arabic identify. The phrase is actually “al-Jazair” and means “the islands,” referring to 4 islands that was once off the nation’s coast however have been a part of the mainland since 1525. Africa’s largest nation, Algeria is wealthy in oil and was conquered by the French in the course of the nineteenth century, after having been partially dominated by the Ottomans.

The French named their colony after Algiers, town they selected as its capital, after they invaded in 1830. Algeria was France’s longest-held abroad territory, and an essential possession of their empire. Gradual dissatisfaction among the many Algerians as a result of their lack of political and financial energy grew, resulting in elevated autonomy granted by France as they labored to quell civil unrest. Lastly, Algeria gained its independence in 1962, and maintains shut cultural and financial ties with the French. 

American Samoa

Pago Pago, American Samoa. Picture credit score: Peto Laszlo/Shutterstock

You may not hear a lot about this landmass, but it surely does exist. American Samoa is an unincorporated US territory within the South Pacific. It covers seven South Pacific islands and atolls, and its capital is Pago Pago situated on the island of Tutuila. Initially settled by Polynesians round 1000 BCE, it was first sighted by the Europeans in 1722, with contact starting when beachcombers and missionaries visited.

In 1878, the US signed a treaty with a view to set up a naval harbour on the islands, then in 1899 they had been divided between the US and Germany earlier than the US took management of the entire space in 1900. It remained a strategic native for a US naval base, and underneath the nation’s management, although the individuals of American Samoa fought for the flexibility to manage their very own affairs. In 1977 they elected their very own first governor, in 1981 their first nonvoting delegate for the Home of Representatives, and eventually their first congressman in 1988.

The phrase Samoa is claimed to imply “individuals of the ocean” however American Samoans don’t have a consensus on this. Linguists who’ve tried to hint the origin have been met with a number of explanations for the which means of the phrase, however none have confirmed conclusive.


Andorra La Vella, Andorra. Picture credit score: Martin Silva Cosentino/Shutterstock

If you’re searching for tiny international locations with a lot of snowboarding, that is your spot. Andorra is a minuscule unbiased principality situated between Spain and France within the Pyrenees mountain vary. There may be some debate surrounding the origins of the nation’s identify. Some say “Andorra” comes from the Basque phrase Andurrial which means “shrub-covered land,” however others really feel the identify comes from the Spanish phrase Andar which implies “to stroll.” These are two of a number of attainable explanations coming from Basque, Arabic, or Spanish.

Andorra has robust ties to Catalonia, the area in northern Spain, and the principle language spoken on this tiny state is Catalan together with Spanish and French. Following management of the Roman empire after which the Visigoths, it escaped the rule of the Arabs because it was protected by the Franks to the north. Within the 12 months 988, the land was given to the Diocese of Urgell by the Depend of Barcelona in change for land elsewhere. Since then, the Bishop of Urgell has remained the co-prince of Andorra together with the Crown of France, and later the President.


Luanda, Angole. Picture credit score: Fabian Plock/Shutterstock

Positioned near the southern tip of Africa, Angola borders Namibia, Zambia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), and the Atlantic Ocean. “Angola” comes from the phrase Ngola, which refers to an iron object representing kingship within the Lunda and Mbundu individuals.

It was initially the roaming lands for noadic tribes just like the Khoi and the San, till the Bantu migration beginning round 1000 BCE. Completely different kingdoms and city-states had been established and occupied the lands on Angola till the arrival of the Portuguese. The nation was colonized by Portugal for about 400 years starting within the 1500s, as much as its independence in 1975. Because of this, it’s a Portuguese-speaking nation, though one other 46 unofficial languages are spoken inside its borders, largely Bantu languages.


Shoal Bay Seaside, Anguilla. Picture credit score: BeyondEnvision/Shutterstock

Anguilla is a British Abroad Territory situated within the Jap Caribbean. Stuffed with sunny seashores and blue skies, the territory will get its identify from the Italian or French phrase for “eel” in reference to the nation’s lengthy, skinny geographic form. Recognized for an essential salt business earlier than its collapse within the Nineteen Eighties, Anguilla is a tropical paradise populated largely by individuals of African descent. 

It was not at all times this fashion, nevertheless. The nation was first inhabited by Arawakan-speaking individuals from the Orinoco River basin of South America round 2000 BCE, who referred to as the nation Malliouhana. Later, in 1650, British settlers from Saint Kitts got here and colonized the land, with nice problem as they had been usually attacked by Indigenous individuals and different colonizers. The British joined the colony along with Saint Kitts and later with Nevis, which the Anguillan individuals protested. Following drought, widespread poverty and labour disturbances, the British rapidly started a means of democratization on Anguilla and different surrounding colonies within the Thirties. Anguilla was a part of an related state with Saint Kitts and Nevis arrange by the British in 1967, however Anguillans flat out refused, declaring themselves unbiased. This introduced the return of British rule, and in the present day it’s a politically secure British Territory.

Antigua and Barbuda

St. John’s, Antigua. Picture credit score: Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

Positioned within the Caribbean, this nation is an unbiased Commonwealth nation with a reputation that refers to its two principal islands. Antigua and Barbuda is situated the place the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Ocean meet and is a well-liked vacationer vacation spot with seashores, reefs, and rainforests in abundance. 

Antigua is claimed to be named by Christopher Columbus in 1493 after the Church of Santa Maria de la Antigua present in Sevilla, Spain. Barbuda was referred to as “Wa’omoni” by its unique Indigenous settlers, which is believed to imply “Island of Herons.” It was doubtless Portuguese cartographer Diego Ribero who named the realm “Barbuda” within the 1500s, probably referring to the nation’s wild fig-trees, whose aerial roots make them seem like they’ve beards. 

Like different islands within the Caribbean, the British and French each tried to colonize, with nice problem at first, with the British succeeding by the tip of the seventeenth century. It turned a part of the Leeward Islands colony, a gaggle of islands underneath British rule, till that colony’s dissolution. Antigua entered into related statehood with the UK, with Barbuda as a dependency of Antigua. An independence motion overtook the islands within the Seventies, and eventually in 1981 they achieved independence.


Plaza de Mayo, Buenos Aires. Picture credit score: Studio New-Artwork/Shutterstock

Residence to Buenos Aires, the “Paris of South America,” Argentina’s identify refers back to the Latin phrase for silver, Argentum. Shipwrecked Spanish conquerors got silver presents by Indigenous peoples in what was to turn into Argentina within the 1500s. Each the Portuguese and Spanish found the nation was rife with silver, and the identify caught. 

The land was occupied by varied Indigenous peoples previous to the arrival of the Europeans, such because the Incas within the Northwest highlands. It was a Spanish colony beginning in 1580, and due to the migration of Spaniards and Italians, the inhabitants in the present day largely has European ancestry with a smaller portion with Indigenous heritage. The independence motion in Argentina started within the 1800s, and so they declared their independence in 1816. It took a few years to defeat Spanish royalists within the northern a part of the nation who refused the Independence of Argentina. At this time, Argentina has come out of political and financial turmoil from the twentieth century and the start of the twenty first.


Mount Ararat, Yerevan, Armenia. Picture credit score: GaroManjikian/Shutterstock

As a landlocked nation in Eurasia with a deep historical past, Armenia is a former republic of the Soviet Union and now thought of to be a part of Europe, though it sits proper on the border between Europe and Asia and so is usually thought of transcontinental. Curiously, Armenians don’t name their nation Armenia however moderately Hyastan, and themselves Hayq (plural. Singular, “Hay”). These phrases hearken again to a folks hero named Hayk, who legend says was a great-great-grandson of Noah, from the Bible’s Previous Testomony. Based on Armenian legend, he’s the forefather of the Armenian individuals.

The identify Armenia was given to the land by the encompassing states, probably due to a tribe who lived within the lands, the Armens. Nonetheless, different theories exist as to the origin of the identify Armenia. 

Armenia was dominated by the Persians and later by Alexander the Nice’s Macedonians, the Seleucids, the Romans, the Persians and the Byzantines, besides, the Armenians had been identified all through these instances as a fiercely autonomous and individualistic individuals. Their tradition and language had been closely influenced by the Franks, and later they fell underneath Ottoman rule. Throughout this era, the Turkic Ottomans dedicated a genocide of the Armenians, and the dying rely of ethnic Armenians throughout this time is estimated anyplace between 600,000 and 1,500,000. They turned a part of the Soviet Union in 1918. After a protracted interval of wrestle, the Armenians declared independence in 1991. 


Oranjestad, Aruba. Picture credit score: Mihai_Andritoiu/Shutterstock

Positioned within the Caribbean Sea, the origins of Aruba’s identify are debated. Some say the identify comes from Spanish. “Oro huba” can imply “there was gold.” Sadly, this was not true in Aruba, as it’s with out gold and the Spaniards didn’t regard Aruba as having any worth. The identify might additionally come from two Carib Indigenous phrases. Ora means “shell’ and Oubao means “island.” 

The island was first inhabited by the Arawaks, an Indigenous inhabitants earlier than it was claimed by the Spanish in 1499. It was a hub for piracy and unlawful commerce. It turned a part of the Dutch West India Firm in 1636. Little financial growth occurred till an oil refinery was constructed in 1920, which significantly improved dwelling requirements on the island because the inhabitants noticed revenue. It was underneath the administration of the island of Curaçao for a lot of its historical past as a Dutch colony, and in 1986 it turned an autonomous state following protest from its inhabitants over the management of Curaçao, and never the Netherlands itself. Whereas it was initially on a path in the direction of independence, that objective has been postponed indefinitely.


Sydney Harbour, Australia. Picture credit score: Taras Vyshnya/Shutterstock

Generally known as the “Land Down Below,” Australia lies within the southern hemisphere and is the most important nation in Oceania. Its identify is claimed to return from the Latin phrase Australis which implies “Southern.” Australia was named by the English explorer Matthew Flinders within the early 1800s. 

Australia is a set of former British colonies and is in the present day a part of the Commonwealth. Curiously, it had truly been beforehand named New Holland by the Dutch. Earlier than changing into a colony, Indigenous peoples inhabited the land for hundreds of years. Britain first got here into contact with the land when explorer James Prepare dinner arrived in 1770, and it turned an official colony in 1788. As a jail colony, it was largely populated by convicts as a substitute for capital punishment. In 1900, the six colonies of Australia turned an unbiased nation, however as a part of the Commonwealth, they preserve a hyperlink with the UK.


Salzburg, Austria. Picture credit score: Really feel good studio/Shutterstock

Landlocked in Europe, Austria is a small nation whose identify refers to the truth that it sits east of Germany. The identify is expounded to the traditional excessive German phrase Ostarrichi, which implies “Jap realm,” and it was used as early because the 12 months 996 to reference the area that bordered Bavaria. 

Across the 12 months 700, the land was settled by the Bavarians and the Slavs, and there may be proof of Frankish affect at the moment. A household referred to as the Habsburgs dominated the realm of Austria from their capital, Vienna, beginning in 1526. In addition they dominated Bohemia, in the present day a part of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Serbia, and Slavonia, now a part of Croatia. As with many different empires all through historical past, it turned unsustainable for the Habsburgs and conflicts with different monarchies, the commercial revolution, mobilization by the inhabitants to turn into extra concerned with politics all proved strenuous. The individuals started a revolution in 1848, and Austria turned a short-lived twin monarchy with Hungary earlier than that crumbled as properly. Austria turned a republic in 1918.


Baku, Azerbaijan. Picture credit score: Milosz Maslanka/Shutterstock

Surrounded by the Caspian Sea and the Caucasus Mountains, the origins of Azerbaijan’s identify is disputed. Many suppose the nation was named after an Iranian governor named Atropatene, who dominated over a area now situated in trendy Iranian Azarbaijan. The phrase Atropates comes from Previous Persian and means “protected by fireplace.”

Early inhabitants of this space had been Iranian audio system, Turkic tribes, and Kurds and the Arabs and Persians closely influenced the realm. After wars between Russia and Iran, the Azerbaijani had their land divided between the 2 states as they sat between the border. Russian Azerbaijan turned a part of the Soviet Union when it shaped, and it remained underneath Soviet management till its dissolution.

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