Etymology
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Atlas 

1580s, in Greek mythology a member of the older family of Gods, later regarded as a Titan, son of Iapetus and Clymene; in either case supposed to uphold the pillars of heaven (or earth), which according to one version was his punishment for being war-leader of the Titans in their battle with the Olympian gods. "Originally the name of an Arcadian mountain god; the name was transferred to the mountain chain in Western Africa" [Beekes].

The Greek name traditionally is interpreted as "The Bearer (of the Heavens)," from a-, copulative prefix (see a- (3)), + stem of tlenai "to bear" (from PIE root *tele- "to lift, support, weigh"). But Beekes compares Berber adrar "mountain" and finds it plausible that the Greek name is a "folk-etymological reshaping" of this. Mount Atlas, in Mauritania, was important in Greek cosmology as a support of the heavens.

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atlas (n.)

"collection of maps in a volume," 1636, first in the title of the English translation of "Atlas, sive cosmographicae meditationes de fabrica mundi" (1585) by Flemish geographer Gerhardus Mercator, who might have been the first to use this word in this way. A picture of the titan Atlas holding up the world appears on the frontispiece of this and other early map collections.

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Atlantis 

mythical island-nation, by 1730, from Greek Atlantis, literally "daughter of Atlas," noun use of fem. adjective from Atlas (stem Atlant-; see Atlas). All references trace to Plato's dialogues "Timaeus" and "Critias," both written c. 360 B.C.E.

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Atlantic (adj.)

early 15c., Atlantyke, "of or pertaining to the sea off the west coast of Africa," from Latin Atlanticus, from Greek Atlantikos "of Atlas," adjectival form of Atlas (genitive Atlantos) as used in reference to Mount Atlas in Mauritania (see Atlas). The name has been extended since c. 1600 to the ocean between Europe and Africa, on one side, and the Americas on the other. As a noun late 14c., Athlant, from Old French Atlante.

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Atlantean (adj.)

1660s, "resembling or pertaining to Atlas" (q.v.). From 1852 as "pertaining to Atlantis" (q.v.).

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Rockies (n.)

"the Rocky Mountains," 1827; see rocky.

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Erzgebirge 

German, literally "ore mountains."

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Pyrenees 

chain of mountains between France and Spain, 1550s, from French Pyrénées, from Latin Pyrenæi montes, from Greek Pyrēnē, name of a daughter of Bebryx/Bebrycius who was beloved of Herakles; she is said to be buried in these mountains (or that the mountains are the tomb Herakles reared over her corpse).

The name is said to mean literally "fruit-stone," but Room says it might be Greek pyr "fire" + eneos "dumb, speechless," which perhaps translates or folk-etymologizes a Celtic goddess name. "In medieval times there was no overall name for the range and local people would have known only the names of individual mountains and valleys" [Adrian Room, "Place Names of the World," 2nd ed., 2006]. Related: Pyrenean.

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massif (n.)

"large block of mountains, more or less distinctly defined; a central mountain mass, the dominant part of a range of mountains," 1885, from French massif "bulky, solid" (see massive), also used as a noun in French, as in Massif Central, name of the plateau in the middle of southern France.

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Apennine 

Latin Apenninus (mons), the chain of mountains which forms the spine of Italy, perhaps from Celtic penn "hill, head of land" (see pen-).

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