San José State University

Polish Place Names

Place names in Poland do not typically have a literal meaning. Some do as is shown in the table below:

Province >Literal Meaning
Zielona GóraGreen Mountain
Jelenia GóraDeer Mountain
PilaSaw
LódzFishing Boat
PiotrkówPeters
ChelmHelmet
BialystokWhite Slope
Biala PoklaskaWhite Forrest

City >Origin of Name
GdanskSwampy Region
BialystokWhite Slope
Olstynfrom German Holstein
PoznanSettlement
SzczecinPeak

The Polish names of a few geographic features are given below along with the words for the cardinal directions.

Geographic
Feature
Polish Term
RiverRzeka
MountainGóra
Mountain PassPrzelecz
Ciag
SeaMorze

DirectionPolish Term
Northlnoc
Southlnie
EastWshód
WestZachód


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