"...look into all things with a searching eye” - Baha'u'llah (Prophet Founder of the Baha'i Faith)


Feb 21, 2013

Origin of names “Europe” and “Asia”

Though the origin of the name “Europe” is not known for certain, the name is very old. A Greek hymn to Apollo from the sixth century B.C. mentions the name, which originally applied only to part of the Balkan Peninsula.  Europe probably derives from a word meaning "mainland," though it may be related to the Assyrian “ereb” –“darkness, west," and therefore "land of the setting sun."

“Asia” probably got its name from the Assyrian “asu” --"sunrise, east." “asu” originally referred only to the east coast of the Aegean Sea but gradually came to include the whole continent. (The Book of Answers, by Barbara Berliner)