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Author Topic: Pennines and Appennines...ones in England, the other in Italy...How come they go  (Read 5286 times)

Offline P-Kasso2

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The Pennines and The Appennines...one is in England, the other is in Italy...How come they got given practically the same names?

They don't even look alike. Our Pennines are flat and the Appennines are proper mountains.

Which came first?

Does the word Pennine actually mean anything, translate as anything?...Does the Ap stuck in front of the Italian version change the meaning drastically?
« Last Edit: 13 May, 2012, 07:11:39 AM by P-Kasso2 »
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Offline seacommander

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Apennines only has one 'p' so I think that the possibility of Pennine being the root name to which Ap was appended is an unlikely explanation.

One possibility is that Penn is the common feature being the Celtic for Mountain Summit. Further evidence for this possibility is that the Celts dominated northern Italy in the 4th century or maybe even earlier.

The name 'Pennines' may have become readily accepted if it was already closely related to an earlier name (or names) for the hills of a Cumbric origin, like the hill Pen-y-ghent in northern Yorkshire. A very similar language to Cumbric was once spoken in Northern Italy. The etymology for the Apennines of Italy that is most frequently repeated (because of its semantic appropriateness) is that it derives from the Celtic Penn, 'mountain, summit':[11] which could have been assigned during the Celtic domination of north Italy in the 4th century BC or before. The name originally applied to the north Apennines.


Claire Nahmad

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The above explanation is the likeliest. However, there is another possibility, difficult to measure because there is so little historical information on this subject (the naming of the Pennines). Pen means head, hill, or highest peak, but it can also relate to the supreme head of a clan, as in Pendragon - its head or king with vassals beneath him.  Inga, or ing means 'the descendants, followers or people of ', and so 'Pennines' could translate to the settlement area of the people of the High King. This is a long stretch, but what makes it just plausible is that the ancient King Coel (the'old King Cole' of the nursery rhyme) had a son, Arthius, living at the time of King Arthur (sixth century) who was referred to after his reign as the 'King of the Pennines' and who might have been King Arthur himself, as his kingdom is strongly associated with the North and the borders region of England as well as further south and into Wales.