peninsula on the coast of Dorsetshire, literally "land surrounding a harbor," Old English Portlanda; see port (n.1) + land (n.). The city in Maine, U.S.A., took its name in 1786 for the place in England. Portland, Oregon, was said to have been named for the city in Maine, which won the honor by a coin toss over Boston. Portland cement (1720) was named by its inventor, English mason Joseph Aspdin, from resemblance of the color to the popular building stone of Portland, England. Related: Portlandian.
updated on September 10, 2020