What Do Greeks Call Greece

Are you curious about the unique names that different countries have for themselves? Well, today we are going to explore what Greeks call Greece! It’s fascinating how each culture has its own distinctive way of referring to their homeland. So, let’s dive into this intriguing topic and discover the Greek name for Greece.

In Greek, the country we commonly know as “Greece” is called “Hellas.” Yes, that’s right! The Greeks have a distinct name for their beloved nation. This simple yet captivating fact showcases the rich cultural heritage and linguistic diversity found in Greece.

Now, you might be wondering why Greeks call Greece “Hellas.” What is the history behind this name? How does it relate to modern-day Greece? In our upcoming discussion, we will delve deeper into these questions and unravel the fascinating story behind this unique naming convention. Get ready to be amazed by the historical significance and cultural nuances surrounding the Greek identity!

Key Takeaways

  • Greece is known as “Hellas” in Greek, reflecting its historical roots and cultural significance.
  • The name “Greece” originated from the Latin term “Graecia,” used by the Romans to refer to the country.
  • Greeks often affectionately refer to their homeland as “Ellada,” embracing their language and heritage.
  • Understanding the various names for Greece offers insight into its rich history and diverse identity.

What is the official name of Greece?

Greece, officially known as the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in southeastern Europe. The official name “Hellenic Republic” reflects the historical and cultural significance of ancient Greece, which laid the foundation for Western civilization. Let’s delve deeper into the reasons behind this official name.

The term “Hellenic” refers to the Greek ethnicity and language that have shaped Greece throughout its history. It encompasses not only modern-day Greece but also represents a broader connection to Greek heritage and traditions. The name emphasizes Greece’s rich cultural heritage and its contributions to philosophy, art, literature, and democracy.

The choice of “Republic” highlights Greece’s political structure as a democratic nation. After centuries of different forms of governance, including monarchy and military rule, Greece became a parliamentary republic in 1974 following years of struggle for democracy.

By officially adopting the name Hellenic Republic, Greece seeks to honor its past while embracing modern democratic principles. This designation underscores the enduring influence and pride Greeks hold for their historical legacy while recognizing their commitment to democratic values.

How did Greece get its name?

The origin of the name “Greece” can be traced back to ancient times. It is believed that the Greeks referred to themselves as “Hellenes,” after their legendary ancestor Hellen, who was the son of Deucalion and Pyrrha. The term “Hellas” was used to describe the land where the Hellenes lived.

Over time, other civilizations encountered the Greeks and adopted variations of this name in their own languages. For example, in Latin, they were known as “Graeci,” which eventually evolved into “Grecia.” This Latin version became widely used throughout Europe.

During medieval times, when Byzantium (the Eastern Roman Empire) was a major power, Greek culture and language spread even further. The Byzantines referred to themselves as ῾Ρωμαῖοι (Romans), but outsiders often called them Έλληνες (Hellenes). As a result, many European countries began using versions of this word to refer to both Byzantium and Greece.

In modern times, Greece gained independence from Ottoman rule in 1821. At that point, it officially adopted the name “Ellas” or “Hellada” in its own language. However, internationally it continued to be known by various forms of the name derived from ancient Greek origins.

Are there any other names for Greece in different languages?

    Here are some more variations of the name Greece:


    2. Portuguese: Grécia
    3. Dutch: Griekenland
    4. Russian: Греция (Gretsiya)
    5. Arabic: اليونان (Al-Yunan)

    As you can see, each language offers its own unique twist to the name of this beautiful Mediterranean country.

    Understanding these diverse names not only enhances our knowledge of linguistics but also deepens our appreciation for the rich tapestry of cultures around us.

What do Greeks themselves call their country?

Greece, a land rich in history and culture, is known by various names. But what do the Greeks themselves call their country? Let’s find out.

In Greek, the country is called “Ελλάς” (Ellás) or “Ελλάδα” (Elláda). These names have deep roots in ancient history and are derived from the name of an ancient tribe called Hellenes. The term “Hellas” was used to refer to the territory inhabited by this tribe.

The word “Ελληνική” (Ellinikí) is often used as an adjective to describe anything related to Greece, such as language or culture. So when Greeks talk about their language, they say they speak “ελληνικά” (elliniká), meaning Greek.

It’s interesting to note that Greece is not the only name used for this Mediterranean nation. In some official contexts like international organizations, it is referred to as the Hellenic Republic.

Is there a historical significance to the name “Greece”?

    The name “Greece” holds great historical significance, with roots that can be traced back thousands of years. Let’s explore some key aspects that shed light on the importance of this name.


    The name “Greece” is derived from the Latin word “Graecia,” which itself originated from the ancient Greek term “Γραικός” (Graikos). This term referred to a specific tribe in central Greece during antiquity.

    Ancient Civilizations

    Greece has been home to numerous ancient civilizations that greatly influenced Western culture and laid the foundations for modern society. From the Minoans and Mycenaeans to the classical city-states like Athens and Sparta, these civilizations played a pivotal role in shaping art, philosophy, politics, and literature as we know them today.

    Olympic Games

    The Olympic Games have deep historical ties with Greece. Originating in Ancient Olympia around 776 BCE, they were held every four years to honor Zeus, the king of gods in Greek mythology. The Olympics symbolized athletic prowess and showcased unity among various Greek city-states.

    Hellenistic Period

    Following Alexander the Great’s conquests in the 4th century BCE, Greek culture spread throughout much of Asia and Egypt under his empire’s influence. This period became known as Hellenistic (derived from Hellas – another name for Greece) and witnessed remarkable advancements in science, mathematics, astronomy, and architecture.

    Literature & Philosophy

    Greece gave birth to renowned philosophers like Socrates, Plato, Aristotle; playwrights such as Sophocles and Euripides; epic poets including Homer; historians like Herodotus and Thucydides. Their works continue to shape our understanding of ethics, metaphysics, tragedy, and the human condition.


Q: What is the name that Greeks use to refer to their country?

A: Greeks call Greece “Hellas” in their native language.

Q: Is there any significance behind the name “Hellas”?

A: Yes, the term “Hellas” has historical and cultural significance for Greeks as it refers to ancient Greece and its civilization.

Q: How did the name “Greece” come about then?

A: The name “Greece” is derived from the Latin word “Graecia,” which was used by the Romans to refer to this region. It later became widely adopted in English and other languages.

Q: Are there any other names that are commonly used to refer to Greece?

A: Another common name for Greece is “Ellada,” which is also derived from the Greek language. This term is often used interchangeably with Hellas.

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