The Slatest

Wait, the Czech Republic Might Change Its Name to “Czechia”?

Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic/Czechia.


So apparently the Czech Republic might change its name to “Czechia” (pronounced CHECK-iya)? The country’s president, prime minister, heads of parliament, and foreign and defense ministers are supporting a resolution to make the change, which will need to be passed by the full Parliament to become official.

The explanation of why this is happening, in the New York Times at least, doesn’t make a ton of sense.

It doesn’t help that many foreigners consistently confuse their proud country, the Czech Republic, with its predecessor, Czechoslovakia, or its poorer cousin, Slovakia.

Or that, in 2013, some analysts mistakenly described the suspects in the Boston Marathon bombing as hailing from the Czech Republic—confusing it with Chechnya, a restive region of Russia nearly 2,000 miles away, and alarming Czech diplomats who issued a clarification.

But … but … “Czechia” sounds more like “Slovakia,” more like “Czechoslovakia,” and definitely more like “Chechnya” than “the Czech Republic” does!

The Guardian, by contrast, says the change is being proposed because “Czechia” would be “easier for companies, politicians and sportsmen to use on products, name tags and sporting jerseys.”

Czechia. Czechia? Czechia, I guess.