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Ultimately from Old East Slavic Москов- (Moskov-), originally referring to the Moskva River, probably from Proto-Slavic *mosky of unknown origin. Perhaps related to Czech moskva (raw bread), Slovak mozga (puddle), Polish Mozgawa, and more distantly Lithuanian mazgóti (to wash, rinse), Sanskrit मज्जति (májjati, to sink), Latin mergō (to dive). May be connected to Finnish Masku.[1] The American placenames derive from the Russian city or from other sources; see the definitions below.


Proper noun[edit]


  1. A federal city, the capital of Russia.
    • 1917, Anton Chekhov, Constance Garnett, transl., The Darling and Other Stories[1], Project Gutenberg, published 9 September 2004, →ISBN, page 71:
      The mother, Ekaterina Pavlovna, who at one time had been handsome, but now, asthmatic, depressed, vague, and over-feeble for her years, tried to entertain me with conversation about painting. Having heard from her daughter that I might come to Shelkovka, she had hurriedly recalled two or three of my landscapes which she had seen in exhibitions in Moscow, and now asked what I meant to express by them.
  2. Moscow Oblast, an oblast of Russia, surrounding the city of Moscow.
  3. (metonymically) The government of Russia or the Soviet Union.
    Synonym: Kremlin
    • 1987, Shelomoh Naḳdimon, First strike: the exclusive story of how Israel foiled Iraq's attempt to get the bomb[2], page 40:
      Moscow said "Nyet!"
    • 1997, Mervin Block, Writing Broadcast News: Shorter, Sharper, Stronger[3], →ISBN, page 154:
      Yet, a few US newscasters will go on the air at 6 pm or later and say, "Moscow said tonight.["] ... A careful writer would make his script read, "Moscow said today. ..."
    • 2009, Svante E. Cornell, S. Frederick Star, The Guns of August 2008: Russia's War in Georgia[4], →ISBN, page 184:
      In addition, Moscow argued that Georgia had violated international law by introducing its forces into South Ossetia, a move Moscow said Tbilisi had committed itself not to do under the earlier CIS-sponsored peacekeeping arrangements.
  4. An unincorporated community in Marengo County, Alabama, United States.
  5. An unincorporated community in Jefferson County, Arkansas, United States.
  6. A city, the county seat of Latah County, Idaho; probably named after the Russian city.
  7. An unincorporated community in Orange Township, Rush County, Indiana, United States.
  8. An unincorporated community in Muscatine County, Iowa, United States.
  9. A tiny city in Stevens County, Kansas; said to be named after Luis de Moscoso Alvarado, a Spanish explorer.
  10. An unincorporated community in Hickman County, Kentucky, United States.
  11. A small town in Somerset County, Maine.
  12. An unincorporated community and census-designated place in Allegany County, Maryland, United States.
  13. An unincorporated community in Freeborn County, Minnesota, United States.
  14. An unincorporated community in Kemper County, Mississippi, United States.
  15. A village in Clermont County, Ohio; said to be named by French veterans of the Battle of Borodino (near Moscow, Russia).
  16. A ghost town in Licking County, Ohio.
  17. A borough of Lackawanna County, Pennsylvania.
  18. A small city in Fayette County, Tennessee; named after Mosgo, a Cherokee chief.
  19. An unincorporated community in Polk County, Texas, United States.
  20. An unincorporated community in the town of Stowe, Lamoille County, Vermont, United States.
  21. An unincorporated community in Hancock County, West Virginia, United States.
  22. A small town in Iowa County, Wisconsin; named after the Mascouten tribe.
  23. (MLE, slang) A nickname for Brandon Estate, a social housing estate in Southwark, Central London.

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]


  1. ^ Vasmer, Max (1964–1973) , “Moscow”, in Etimologičeskij slovarʹ russkovo jazyka [Etymological Dictionary of the Russian Language] (in Russian), translated from German and supplemented by Oleg Trubačóv, Moscow: Progress