What are some old country names

Country names with articles / country names without articles

Country names that are female have kept the article to this day. However, there are only a handful of them:

the Dominican Republic, Mongolia, Switzerland, Slovakia, Turkey, Ukraine, the Central African Republic

There are also not very many male country names, and there is also a fluctuating gender usage among them. The country names mentioned below can be used both masculine and neuter. If they are used as a male, they are followed by an article

Iraq, Iran, Yemen, Congo, Lebanon, Niger, Sudan, Chad, the Vatican

The name "Iran" used to be seen as a masculine word, so it was always "Iran". Today more and more editors and publishers are starting to use “Iran” without articles because there are no articles in Persian itself. For many readers, sentences like "Then the minister flew to Iran" and "In Iran the earth shook again" sound strange. However, there is no rule that tells us to adopt the pronunciation and gender of a country name from the respective national language. Therefore, everyone is free to continue to use “Iran” with a masculine article and to say “to Iran” and “in Iran” accordingly.

All countries whose names are in the plural are also listed with an article:

the Bahamas, the Netherlands, the Philippines, the Solomon Islands, the Seychelles, the USA, the United Arab Emirates

If there is an attribute in front of the name, the article suddenly becomes visible again even in countries of neuter gender: beautiful Austria, modern France, ancient China, the reunified Germany.


Find: Belgium or Congo?