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I have noticed that in Romanian the name of Wales is Ţara Galilor, which literally means Country of the Gauls or "Gauls-land". I consider this not just unusual, something that is not present in other languages, but an aberration that I (as native speaker of that language) would like to see changed, for reasons that I would have to mention here (in order to clarify my question).

Although I am almost convinced that my opinion is justified, I am also amazed that I have not until now found this topic discussed and argued about in Romanian (and in Romania) by people interested (volens nolens) in this language. So, I hurried up and edited a section on that specific Wikipedia article in Romanian, called A language problem: on being Welsh in the country of the "Gauls" where I tried to explain the situation.

Here is the translation of that fragment:

The name of Wales in the Romanian language was, it seems, wrongly constructed, by a wrong translation of the French name of the country, Pays de Galles, literally "the country of Wales", as "the country of the Gauls". The error probably comes from a confusion between the terms "gal" (Romanian term for "Gaul person" or "from Gaul") and "galez" (Romanian term for Welsh), facilitated by the phonetic similarity.

The name "Wales", transposed in the Neo-Latin languages, undergoes a transformation by which W is replaced by G (in the same way that the name Wilhelm or William is Guillaume in French and Guillermo in Spanish): Pays de Galles in French, Galles in Italian, Gales in Spanish, País de Gales in Portuguese. The correct form in Romanian should simply be Wales (as in German, Slavic languages and Hungarian) or it could follow the Latin pattern in forms like “Țara Galeză” ("The Welsh Country"), "Țara Galezilor” ("The Country of the Welsh"), "Gales” or even „Galezia”, but by no means "Țara Galilor” (country of the Gauls. The Romanian term “Galez” (Welsh) comes from the French "gallois" (literally, inhabitant of Wales), which doesn’t mean "Gaul" (inhabitant of Gaul, in French, "gaulois"), and yet the name adopted in Romanian for Wales is "Country of the Gauls".

The situation is so ridiculously confusing that the Romanian Wikipedia article on the Welsh people (which are correctly called Galezi, and not Gauls) starts with this phrase (my translation to English):

The Welsh (Cymry in the Welsh language, Welsh in English) are a Celtic people, the native inhabitants of the Country of the Gauls.

Given the absence of any debate that I know of, my certainty about the justification of my opinion is a bit shaky, so I would have to make a good argument. That argument would have to include some elements about the existence of a norm/trend in the construction of the name Wales in languages other than Romanian (and English). Showing that no similar case exists and that there is a norm or trend that Romanian contradicts or simply does not follow would help my case. I am curious whether such a confusion is somehow justified (and thus is more than a confusion) or if it is present in other languages too.


Here are a few notes in anticipation of possible objections:

  • Considering the idea that "gal" (Romanian for Gaul people, gaulois in French) and "galez" (Romanian for Welsh, gallois in French) are related, so there is no problem with the form "galezilor" (meaning "of the Gauls"). I have already received an answer by @LаngLаngС which largely dismisses my concerns by emphasizing the fact that these terms (and many others) have etymologically the same root, so they mean the same thing, and thus could be used interchangeably. This is obviously false. I think that the author of the answer just wanted to bring to my attention the very interesting fact that there are a lot of terms that come from the same Germanic root meaning "foreigner", some applied to Celts/Gauls, and some to Roman/Latin, then neo-Latin peoples, namely Italian and Romanian. I was very aware about all that, I was not amazed at all by the similarity between the words for Welsh and Gaul in Romanian, French or other language: the problem is that nobody seem to use the name Gaul and Welsh interchangeably. The common root resulted in a close phonetic similarity between two terms (one for the Welsh/Wales, one for the Gauls) but not in a confusion between them, excepting Romanian where the phonetic similarity facilitated the confusion. Even there the confusion is only partial, and is bringing more inconsistency: it is absent in the name of the people themselves (called "galezi" in Romanian, from French "gallois", meaning Welsh: and not Gaul/Celt), and thus the name of the country is different (for no obvious reason) from the name of the people. Why is that? Because a correction has already been made, only incomplete. The only dictionary that I could find where "gal" ("gali", plural) — meaning Gaul — is used for "modern inhabitants of Wales" (with an example for the Prince of Wales as "principele Galilor", that is "the Prince of the Gauls") dates from 1923. - That answer is very informative (to the point that I don't need to add here any supplementary information about the etymology of the terms involved) and also very funny, but beyond that it is only a jeu d'esprit, by which one could say Galicia in Spain, Galatia in Anatolia mean the same thing, or that, because of the common origin-root, even the Vlachs are "Welsh", which makes the Gauls-Welsh confusion acceptable. A statement like 'gal' and 'galez' denoted the same thing but then evolved into a split of two slightly different meanings is misleading: the meanings are completely different; the split is related to two different countries and the two different terms now applies to them. (The name Wales doesn’t mean now “Country of those speaking differently from us".) The etymology explains the similar form of the words but a common origin doesn’t mean an identical present meaning.

(By the way in English we have Galicia for the region in Eastern Europe with the same form as for that in Spain, but that term escapes the web of the Walhaz root.)

  • Considering the idea that there are no aberrant names of peoples and countries. That is also false, as scientific, political, and moral reasons can contribute to reforming outdated terminology. Progress of knowledge is sometimes enough. Historical evolution and moral reasons count too, like in many names of peoples and regions related to colonial era and colonialist connotations. I will edit the question to give a few examples. (The first that comes to mind is the way the terms referring to Jews or African were used. Change has already taken place there. What about the native Americans being called Indians?)

In Romanian, there are also many terms that have been "updated", and a new change would have nothing spectacular. I'll explain why.

The modern form of Romanian is rather recent, based on the Romanian literature that developed in the second half of the 19th century, coinciding with the increasing contacts with the Western Europe, especially France, with the cultural and national rissorgimento typical of that era, and the creation of a new independent state. The language integrated thus new terminology, reflecting the new developments and contacts that the state and the people had. Language is vital to historical and political identity (meaning: reality), especially in countries that were created during the 19th century. These changes were not only linguistically, but historically determined and politically motivated, and reflected the history and the evolution of Romanian language and speakers. Without necessarily promoting a view of history-as-progress, modern Romanian language was and is marked by a process of conscious transformation, seen as modernization, adjustment, literary maturation, logical cohesion, European-integration, etc. My opinion is that the term discussed here is still part of a such process. As linguistic rules and forms have changed continuously until the present (with a radical, controversial and only partially accepted reform as recently as 1993): the form of Wales in Romanian can very well change too. That process is not at all absurd or impossible in Romanian context. I do not know exactly when the form Ţara Galilor was first used (I guess around 1900), but its aberrant form reflects the instability of the language to this day: such "aberrations" existed in the past and were subject to change/correction. In my opinion this form can be explained (and a change can be promoted) through similar reasons as in some other cases. Some examples: neamţ, jidan, ţigan.

  • Neamţ. - If the originary German root Wal/Val/Gal changed and diversified a lot, by contrast, the term that symmetrically denotes the German in many languages neamţ/nemetz/nemeth (of Slavic origin) has a stable meaning in many Slavic languages, in Hungarian, and also in Romanian; it had that very meaning in Romanian in the 16th-17th centuries, but in the 18th century it did suffer a change as it was used in Romanian to denote any Westerner, including French, that is any European wearing European clothing, at a time when Romanian nobility wore a very typical Oriental/Ottoman attire. That was due to the lack of contact between Romanians and the West Europeans at that time. This quickly changed though, the term went back to meaning only German, and is at the present used as such, albeit only in colloquial context. That restriction of the meaning to German can be considered justified, while its present application to all Europeans would be an aberration.

  • Jidan. - A derogatory term meaning Jew, constructed from Slavic Jidov>Jid. The term was not just derogatory though, but was used by the rural people at a time when peasants represented 90% of the population and had little or no contact with Jews. When this contact increased through urbanization, and during a progress of antisemitism, the term gradually became derogatory and its meaning and use shifted abruptly, but not before entering official dictionaries in the 1930-s when a dictionary simply describes the term as meaning “Jewish population” but also gives Freemason as a synonym! (Scriban, 1939). After the WW2 and until recently the term disappeared from proper discourse (the dictionaries mention it as derogatory), and in current speech is rarely used, mainly by low-educated people, its derogatory meaning having a very variable intensity: it seems bound to disappear entirely in the future; by contrast, for poetic reasons, the even older jidov (which was never derogatory) remains in the formula jidovul rătăcitor, meaning the Wandering Jew. The shifting in the meaning of this term was, like in the case of neamţ, a reflection of Romanian speakers’ lack of sufficient contact and knowledge at some point in time with other peoples (here, Jewish people: but here also a reflection of the aberrant relation that antisemitism represents); when that changed, other terms (evreu, israelit, etc) competed with the old term, and pushed it out of proper language. Using it now with the meaning Jew would be an aberration.

  • Ţigan - Meaning Roma people, that is literally Gypsy, is in the process of being removed from proper language because of its frequent derogatory connotation in order to be replaced by the endonym rom (plural, romi). Resistance to this change is due to some people's fear of a confusion between those terms and those related to Romania/Romanian. That resistance is itself based on lack of information and knowledge on the reality, history and coherence of the Roma language and culture. The progress of knowledge in this field will surely contribute to rom/romi replacing the old terminology.

My argument is that the term Tara Galilor for Wales is also related to an outdated stage of Romanian language and culture, characterized by lack of interest and knowledge in the history and peoples of Western Europe. Romanians were just discovering that area of the world at the middle of 19th century, and introducing into their language the proper terms denominating the various countries and peoples there. France and French language were the first on their list and much of the rest have been filtered through French patterns, ideas and also words (a lot of the modern Romanian vocabulary comes from French).

My scenario about what happened is that at a stage when the common knowledge on the Great Britain was somewhat fuzzy, Romanian journalists translated Pays de Galles as Ţara Galilor; at that time there was no word for Welsh in Romanian, but there was already one for Gaul, which had been constructed directly from Latin, in the form gal. But when the same type of people were looking for a Romanian translation for Wales/Welsh they could not use Latin and so used French, where the term for Welsh is gallois, while for Gaul it is gaulois; but they neglected the 1-letter difference and considered those terms as identical. As Gaul already existed in Romanian as gal, they simply transposed into Romanian the false identity between gallois and gaulois. This was not done because they were aware of or interested in the common origin of those two terms, but because their French was not perfect. The erroneous translation entered the common use and even dictionaries (as mentioned above), but it was partially corrected: Welsh became galez in Romanian (similar to other Romance languages), but the name of the country still reflects the old mishap.

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    Yeah. I actually find the content of this post quite interesting, but I'm not sure what exactly an "answer" would be answering. Could that be clarified? – T.E.D. Nov 15 at 17:03
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    Well, I think a Linguist would probably tell you that a language's place names generally aren't "wrong" or "right", but rather just are. But a lot could be said about where other languages got their name for "Wales" from, and if it was a similar process. – T.E.D. Nov 15 at 17:08
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    If I understand OP correctly, I believe the question boils down to "What is the proper or preferred way to construct the name of the country of Wales?" By proper/preferred, OP is asking what is the conventional approach within Europe. In this case, OP gave an example of Romanian & French wikipedia. FWIW, if this is the correct understanding, I had a very similar discussion many years ago. I'm not sure tho, whether I've understood OP correctly. I'll leave it at this because the issue could be quite complicated. This does involve linguistics, but also history, imho. – J Asia Nov 15 at 19:47
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    I call prescriptivism on this question. – Aaron Brick Nov 15 at 20:44
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    I'm not comfortable with history judging things to be "aberrant"; please refine the title to ask a single question, and clarify the text of the question to make it clear that the question is about historical European trends & conventions for the name of the country Wales. This is a tough question - you are asking for historical information within the context of a broader policy question. The question as presented is an XY question and out of scope - but I think there is a very narrow, very appropriate question hidden within. Good luck. – Mark C. Wallace Nov 18 at 15:29
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This may sound weird, but it's not. Well, in fact, it is very weird indeed.

–– With equal right one might say that Romania should correctly be called Wales. ––

If that joke is lost on you, read the rest of this answer:
there is nothing incorrect to observe. There is just a lot of culture and language evolution over quite a few centuries and thus a no small amount of historical contingency. It's not all explained away with consonantal drift or vowel shifts or the like.

Very short answer to

Q: Is the name of Wales in any way related to the Gauls? Can “Wales” be translated as “Country of the Gauls”?

Yes. Yes.


Celts are:

a collection of ethnic groups of Europe identified by their use of the Indo-European Celtic languages and cultural similarities. The history of pre-Celtic Europe and the exact relationship between ethnic, linguistic and cultural factors in the Celtic world remains uncertain and controversial. The exact geographic spread of the ancient Celts is disputed; in particular, the ways in which the Iron Age inhabitants of Great Britain and Ireland should be regarded as Celts have become a subject of controversy.

But the distribution of such is given as:

enter image description here

where we see that even today in Wales a number of Celtic language speakers remain.

Many German tribes called all Celts 'Welsh' people, meaning 'the others' 'those that speak the other language', while Greeks used Keltoi and Galatoi and the Romans Galli, Galloi and Celts are in certain context one and the same.

It's similar to Germans being called Saxons, Alemanns, Germans, Teutons or 'the silent ones' (not speaking the language in Slavic regions) etc.

Now look at these two maps:

enter image description here enter image description here

The question is, where are the Belgae and Parisii? Were are the Pictones and can you pinpoint Gallia, Galatia, Galicia, on a map of Europe?

Connection with Celtic peoples supposedly explains the relation of the name "Galicia" to many similar place names found across Europe and Asia Minor, such as ancient Gallia or Gaul (modern France, Belgium, and northern Italy), Galatia (in present-day Turkish Asia Minor), the Iberian Peninsula's Galicia, and Romanian Galați.

This a problem not of ethnogenesis but of exonymous attribution of identifications. Already Greeks and Romans were doing it:

The Gauls of Gallia Celtica according to the testimony of Caesar called themselves Celtae in their own language (as distinct from Belgae and Aquitani), and Galli in Latin. As is not unusual with ancient ethnonyms, these names came to be applied more widely than their original sense, Celtae being the origin of the term Celts itself (in its modern meaning referring to all populations speaking a language of the "Celtic" branch of Indo-European) while Galli is the origin of the adjective Gallic, now referring to all of Gaul.

The name Gaul itself is not derived from Latin Galli, but from the Germanic word *Walhaz (see Gaul).

With Caesar basing his division supposedly on language, but not even making the distinction between non-Celtish speakers in the East and in the South-West of Gaul, where they spoke Germanic and Basque (Aquitania).

*Walhaz is a reconstructed Proto-Germanic word meaning "Roman", "Romance-speaker", or "Celtic-speaker". The term was used by the ancient Germanic peoples to describe inhabitants of the former Western Roman Empire, who were largely romanised and spoke Latin or Celtic languages (cf. Valland in Old Norse).

Welsh, Galli, Gaul, Celt all mean the same thing.

So you end up with a 'correct' term for Wales and Welsh people in Latin derived Romanian, not because any

Q: error probably comes from a confusion between the terms "gal" (Romanian term for "Gaul person" or "from Gaul") and "galez" (Romanian term for Welsh), facilitated by the phonetic similarity.

but because 'gal' and 'galez' denoted the same thing but then evolved into a split of two slightly different meanings.

Heck, even within Romania is Welsh, as Wallachia comes from Vlachs and thus also from *Walhaz:

The word Vlach/Wallachian (and other variants such as Vlah, Valah, Valach, Voloh, Blac, Oláh, Vlas, Ilac, Ulah, etc.) is etymologically derived from the ethnonym of a Celtic tribe, adopted into Proto-Germanic *Walhaz, which meant "stranger", from *Wolkā- (Caesar's Latin: Volcae, Strabo and Ptolemy's Greek: Ouolkai). Via Latin, in Gothic, as *walhs, the ethnonym took on the meaning "foreigner" or "Romance-speaker", and was adopted into Greek Vláhi (Βλάχοι), Slavic Vlah, Hungarian oláh and olasz, etc. The root word was notably adopted in Germanic for Wales and Walloon, and in Switzerland for Romansh-speakers (German: Welsch), and in Poland Włochy or in Hungary olasz became an exonym for Italians.

Historically, the term was used primarily for the Romanians. Testimonies from the 13th-14th centuries show that, although in the European (and even extra-European) space they were called Vlachs or Wallachians (Oláh in Hungarian, Vláchoi (βλάχοι) in Greek, Volóxi (воло́хи) in Russian, Walachen in German, Valacchi in Italian, Valaques in French, Valacos in Spanish), the Romanians used for themselves the endonym "Rumân/Român", from the Latin "Romanus" (in memory of Rome).

Via both Germanic and Latin, the term started to signify "stranger, foreigner" also in the Balkans, where it in its early form was used for Romance-speakers, but the term eventually took on the meaning of "shepherd, nomad". The Romance-speaking communities themselves however used the endonym (they called themselves) "Romans".

We observe languages evolving, groups moving or staying, some wars here or there, ethnicities forming or dissolving, empires grow and fall, endonyms and exonyms mixing and rotating.

Q: Is the name of Wales in any way related to the Gauls? Can “Wales” be translated as “Country of the Gauls”?

Yes. As it really just means at its root "Country of those speaking differently from us" ("Us" being Greek, Germanic or Latin speakers, "those" in this case 'speakers of a Celtic language', which are still found in Wales.

Welsh Old English Wielisc, Wylisc (West Saxon), Welisc, Wælisc (Anglian and Kentish) "foreign; British (not Anglo-Saxon), Welsh; not free, servile," from Wealh, Walh "Celt, Briton, Welshman, non-Germanic foreigner;" in Tolkien's definition, "common Gmc. name for a man of what we should call Celtic speech," but also applied in Germanic languages to speakers of Latin, hence Old High German Walh, Walah "Celt, Roman, Gaulish," and Old Norse Val-land "France," Valir "Gauls, non-Germanic inhabitants of France" (Danish vælsk "Italian, French, southern"); from Proto-Germanic *Walkhiskaz, from a Celtic tribal name represented by Latin Volcæ (Caesar) "ancient Celtic tribe in southern Gaul."

As a noun, "the Britons," also "the Welsh language," both from Old English. The word survives in Wales, Cornwall, Walloon, walnut, and in surnames Walsh and Wallace. Borrowed in Old Church Slavonic as vlachu, and applied to the Rumanians, hence Wallachia. Among the English, Welsh was used disparagingly of inferior or substitute things (such as Welsh cricket "louse" (1590s); Welsh comb "thumb and four fingers" (1796), and compare welch (v.)). Welsh rabbit is from 1725, also perverted by folk-etymology as Welsh rarebit (1785).

From the German perspective:

welsch adj. 'romanesque', especially 'italian', more general 'from southern regions, from the romanesque area (especially Italy, France, Spain)',
ahd. wal(a)hisc (11th century),
mhd. walhisch, welhisch, walsch, welsch 'Italian, French, Romanesque',
mnd. welsch,
mnl. walsch, welsch,
nl. waals 'wallonisch',
aengl. (angl.) wē̌lisc, wǣ̌lisc, (westsächs.) wī̌lisc, wȳ̌lisc 'Celtic, Normannic',
engl. Welsh 'walisisch', anord. valskr 'romanisch',
swed. välsk 'romanisch'.

The adjective is derived from one in ahd. Wal(a)h 'Roman' (9th century),
mhd. Walch, Walhe 'Roman, Italian, French', English Walh, Wealh 'Celt, Gaul, Roman'. (Plur.)
Valir 'Inhabitants of Northern France, Celtic Inhabitants of England', which is derived from the name of a Celtic people of indefinite origin, neighbouring the Germanic tribes (lat. Volcae, germ. *Walhōs). Even before the ahd. the word welsch therefore stands for 'Romanic', and specifically for 'Italian' (until the 18th century), for 'French' (since the 16th century predominantly in southwestern sources, in literary language in marked contrast to German, often with derogatory connotations), seldom for 'Spanish' or 'Rhaeto-Romanic'), and more rarely for 'Spanish' or 'Rhaeto-Romanic'. In a figurative sense 'strange, incomprehensible' (16th century). rotwelsch adj. 'gaunersprachlich, unverständlich', mhd. rotwalsch, -welsch, substantiviert Rotwelsch n. 'unverständliche Sprache der Gauner und Landstreicher', mhd. rotwalsch (13th century), afterwards also 'betrügerische Rede'; formed to retw. red(t) 'schlauer Bettler'. The composition is then under the influence of the colour designation red in its figurative sense of 'false, unfaithful', also 'fraudulent, roguish'.

To be truly true to the ancient origin of the tribal name one would have to go back in this one perspective to the Volcae (looking almost like a false friend cognate to German Volk, meaning 'people' but having the ie. root of *pel(ə)-, *plē- btw) which lived 'naturally' not in Wales but in Central Germany and did not migrate to Britain either.

enter image description here –– 1a. Pre Roman Wales - The Celts

enter image description here

The standard pattern is "'We' are the people/humans/speakers of the same language" as an endonym for any tribe/group. (Example) "'Them' are the foreigners, the weird ones, the not to be trusted, speakers of weird and unintelligible sounds". Although that may be altered sometimes with taking any tribe's own name (endonym) from first encounter and perpetuating this (like Finnish Saksa for Germans etc). If it turns out nice. Sometimes it's less nice and a 'bad thing' is then taken as the exonym, like Niemce/silent for Germans (could have been worse with Moffen, Boches, Huns, quite recently) or like Volcae being known as Tectosages ('possession-seekers', 'claim-stakers) when coming into Greek lands & Anatolia, Celts taking loot and root in what was subsequently called Galatia.

One example for this endonym of the type "we are us" going to an exonym of type "they are those" may be the Silures in modern day Wales:

The Latin word Silures is of Celtic origin, perhaps derived from the Common Celtic root *sīlo-, 'seed'. Words derived from this root in Celtic languages (e.g. Old Irish síl, Welsh hil) are used to mean 'blood-stock, descendants, lineage, offspring', as well as 'seed' in the vegetable sense. 'Silures' might therefore mean 'Kindred, Stock', perhaps referring to a tribal belief in a descent from an originating ancestor.

As a general rule about this going from *Walhaz this almost coincides with the extent of the Roman empire. Germanic and Slavic languages called all these lands inhabited by *walhaz (and following language developments) , those untrustworthy foreigners with a weird language, whether still Celtic or already romanised. From a Germanic perpective, or Polish, Russian perspective, these were all properly called 'Welsh', no matter if Italic, Hispanic, Dacic, or on the British Isles under Roman control.

The final twist only comes into it when Germanic Anglo-Saxons come onto the Island and repeat the pattern from a few centuries earlier in calling the Celts, Gauls, Galli, Keltoi in Wales still Welsh, despite them being Deceangli, Ordovices, Demetae or Silures. Oh those foreigners! In their own lands they are still foreigners! At least the Welsh also still call the English as "Saxons" (Saeson) ;)

To go back to the joke about prescriptiveness in the beginning: in Romania the place is still full of foreigners who are still 'welsh' speakers, preferring to speak a Romanian descendant from Latin. In Wales the place is still full of foreigners who prefer to speak a welsh language called Welsh, developed from a Celtic, that is Gallic, branch of indo-European. And another welsh language called English, being a mix of Latin (welsh), French (welsh), German/Dutch, Danish, Norwegian (not-welsh). As the Romanians speak Romanian which is arguably more influenced by Latin (welsh) than English (don't ask for percentages of 'welshness'), which place is more 'correctly' called land of the welsh speakers, or land of the Gauls?

As for a shorthand, I struggle to come up with a nice 'line' for very roughly dividing welsh and not-welsh: Reykjavik to Jerusalem, Aberdeen to Galați? Surely suboptimal choices.

Q: in Romanian the name of Wales is Tara Galilor, which literally means Country of the Gauls or "Gauls-land". This is not the case in other languages…

Except for French: Payes de Galles; Italian: Galles; Turkish: Galler; Spanish: Gales; Portuguese: País de Gales, Interlingua, Corsu, Ladino, Catala, Aragonese, Asturian, Galego, Basque, Lombard, Occitan, Picard, Piedmontese, Venetian, Sardo. That looks pretty much like the default for languages now spoken in what was once the Western Roman Empire as long as those lands now still speak a

The strange things in this list are primarily that the people on the territory of ancient Gallia now say they live in France and the 'land of the Gauls' is across the channel and that the Greeks adopted Ουαλία from their Germanic and Slavic Northern Neigbours.

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    You left out that strange plant product, the walnut! – kimchi lover Nov 16 at 1:33
  • Somewhere in there, you seem to have missed what seems to be a fairly important point: Wales and Welsh are the names the English gave to the country and language, not the names the people of that country use. (And perhaps other countries then copied the English name, varying the pronounciation a bit.) Much as Japan in English is Nihon in Nihongo. – jamesqf Nov 16 at 5:02
  • @jamesqf Isn't that covered sufficiently with "As a general rule…" with the Anglo-Saxons doing this exonyming? – LаngLаngС Nov 16 at 12:07
  • The answer is impressive but a bit too much for my needs. I am aware of the history of the name Vlach/Wallachian, and the relation to Welsh (also Waloon, etc). There is an old common origin , but then we have different (hi)stories and especially different meanings. What initially meant "foreign" for Germans evolved in more specific and different meanings: Celtic, Roman, Italian, Romanian. In French "gaulois" and "gallois" are two very different things, just like "gal" and "galez" in Romanian, even if the name of the country is the result of a confusion. – cipricus Nov 17 at 19:09
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    @cipricus not sure what's the point of the question if it's just to list other languages but you mean as in Portuguese País de Gales? Gales is a simple cognate of Wales (in the same g/w relation seen in many words like e.g. guerra < *werra > war), so I find that quite predictable? – melissa_boiko Nov 18 at 21:12

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