from Latin Europa "Europe," from Greek Europe, which is of uncertain origin; as a geographic name first recorded in the Homeric hymn to Apollo (522 B.C.E. or earlier):
"Telphusa, here I am minded to make a glorious temple, an oracle for men, and hither they will always bring perfect hecatombs, both those who live in rich Peloponnesus and those of Europe and all the wave-washed isles, coming to seek oracles."
Often explained as "broad face," from eurys "wide" (see eury-) + ops "face," literally "eye" (from PIE root *okw- "to see"). But also traditionally linked with Europa, Phoenician princess in Greek mythology. Klein (citing Heinrich Lewy) suggests a possible Semitic origin in Akkad. erebu "to go down, set" (in reference to the sun) which would parallel occident. Another suggestion along those lines is Phoenician 'ereb "evening," hence "west."
region in central Europe, Medieval Latin, named for the River Morva (German March, Latin Marus), which runs through it.
country in Eastern Europe, named for the river through it, probably from a PIE word meaning "dark, darkish color, soiled, black" (see melano-).
"the sea between southern Europe and northern Africa," 1590s, earlier Mediterranie (c. 1400), from Late Latin Mediterraneum mare "Mediterranean Sea" (7c.), from Latin mediterraneus "midland, surrounded by land, in the midst of an expanse of land" (but in reference to the body of water between Europe and African the sense probably was "the sea in the middle of the earth"); from medius "middle" (from PIE root *medhyo- "middle") + terra "land, earth" (from PIE root *ters- "to dry").
The Old English name was Wendel-sæ, so called for the Vandals, Germanic tribe that settled on the southwest coast of it after the fall of Rome. The noun meaning "a person of Mediterranean race" is by 1888.
strait between the Aegean Sea and the Sea of Marmara, separating Europe from Asia, the classical Hellespont, probably from Dardanus (Greek Dardanos), name of an ancient city near Troy, on the Asia side of the strait, home of the Dardani, a people-name said to be from a mythical founder Dardanus, but this is likely folk-etymology. Related: Dardanian.