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Related to Toponymy: Toponymist, Toponyms
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



the branch of onomastics that studies toponyms (place names), their meaning, structure, origin, and area of distribution. The aggregate of toponyms for a given area constitutes its toponymy. Microtoponymy is the study of the names of such smaller geographical units as localities, springs, whirlpools, and farmlands. Toponymy is closely interrelated with geography, history, and ethnography.

Toponymy is an important research tool in historical lexicology, dialectology, and etymology. Some toponyms, particularly hydronyms, preserve archaisms and older dialectical features and often originate in the substrate languages of a given area. Toponymy aids in reconstructing the history of peoples and in defining the boundaries within which they lived. It also helps to determine the areas in which languages were once prevalent and to locate former cultural and economic centers and trade routes. The transcription of toponyms establishes their original spelling and the period of their introduction into other languages; this information is used in military cartography and in all types of communication.


Nikonov, V. A. Vvedenie v toponimiku. Moscow, 1965.
Popov, A. I. Geograficheskie nazvaniia. Moscow-Leningrad, 1965.
Zhuchkevich, V. A. Obshchaia toponimika, 2nd ed. Minsk, 1968.
Pospelov, E. M. Toponimika i kartografiia. Moscow, 1971.
Murzaev, E. M. Ocherki toponimiki. Moscow, 1974.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Undoubtedly, this volume is a remarkable and beneficial contribution to a growing body of work in the vigorous field of critical toponymy. The book should be of relevance to cultural, historical and urban geographers as well as urban historians, linguists interested in socio-onomastics, and other social scientists.
The name cluster is based on a comparative transferred name possibly borrowed from German toponymy by the local landlord.
Perhaps because the book is intentionally nonstructuralist in approach, Nash keeps the chapters on linguistic aspects of toponymy (Chapters Four and Six) quite brief.
Chapter 2 investigates the toponymy and cultural landscape of the region of Gebelein.
We have reviewed the names of 18 south-Pyrenean localities and standardized with the current toponymy, correcting previous misspellings and providing name equivalences.
In addition to the political and ethnic balances in northern Syria, even the toponymy -- the way names of places are determined -- has changed in favor of Kurdish lingo.
Keywords: road signs, toponymy, linguistic landscape, symbolic power, Israeli-Palestinian relations, Galilee
"The maps not only contribute to our understanding of cartography, but also of toponymy - place names - the history of printing and of early modern society and its world view," the National Library spokesman said.
It shows how categoricalness of demands and the courage of those who claimed their presence in the city and their right for contributing adds to the toponymy of the city.
(13.) Teius, S., Cristureanu, Al., Iancu, V., s.a., Onomastics Studies and Materials, Bucharest, The Socialist Republic of Romania Academy P.H., 1969; Iordan, I., The Romanian Toponymy, Bucharest, 1963; Graur, Al., Names of Persons, Bucharest, Scientific P.H., 1965; Pasca, Ct.: Name of Persons and Names of Animals in the Olt River Region, Bucharest, 1963; Constantinescu, N.A., Onomastics Romanian Dictionary, Bucharest, 1963; Iordan, I., Dictionary of Romanian Family Names, Bucharest, Scientific and Encyclopedic P.H., 1983., etc.
For human geography, with a special emphasis on population geography, toponymy and historical geography, Mara Popp should be noted, whose published works, alongside with Simion Mehedinti's, paved a new way of development for the Romanian geography.