mountain on the peninsula in the Red Sea between Africa and Arabia, an important site in the Old Testament; it is named perhaps for Sin, a moon goddess worshipped by Sumerians, Akkadians, and ancient Arabs. The name was extended to the whole peninsula. As an adjectival form, Sinaic is by 1769, Sinaitic by 1786.
federation comprising the southern end of the Malay peninsula (except Singapore) and the northwestern part of Borneo, from Malay + Latinate ending -ia. Originally an early 19c. British geographers' name for the Indonesian archipelago. Related: Malaysian.
peninsula near the head of the Adriatic Sea, Latin Istria, from Istaevones, name of a Germanic people there, of unknown origin. Related: Istrian (c. 1600).
peninsula south of Thrace, from Greek khersonesos "peninsula," from khersos "dry land" + nēsos "island," also "(flooded) land near a river, alluvial land," which is of uncertain origin; traditionally from PIE root sna- "to swim," but this is now generally rejected. "As words for 'island' differ from language to language, [nēsos] is probably an Aegean loan (note that Lat. insula is also of unclear origin)" [Beekes]. Compare isle.
"native of the Malay peninsula or the adjecent islands," also "the language of the Malays," 1590s, from native (Austronesian) name Malayu. As an adjective from 1779; the earlier adjective form was Malayan (1660s).
peninsula of New England, named 1602 by English navigator Bartholomew Gosnold for the abundance of fish his men caught there (see cod). In reference to houses reminiscent of New England architecture, from 1916.
Siberian peninsula, 1730, named for a native people, the Kamchadal, from Koryak (Chukotko-Kamchatkan) konchachal, which is said to mean "men of the far end" [Room]. Related: Kamchatkan.
1580s, "pertaining to the brackish sea between the Scandinavian peninsula and Eastern Europe," from Medieval Latin Balticus, perhaps from Lithuanian baltas "white" or Scandinavian balta "belt; strait" (in reference to its narrow entranceway). In German, it is Ostsee, literally "east sea." From 1887 as the name of a language group comprising Lithuanian, Lettish, and Old Prussian.
former name of southern Spain, from Spanish, from al Andalus, Arabic name for the entire peninsula, which probably is from Late Latin *Vandalicia "the country of the Vandals" (see vandal) in reference to the Germanic tribe that, with others, overran the Western Empire 3c.-4c., and for a time settled in southern Spain. See vandal. Related: Andalusian.