Volume 3, Issue 1
  • ISSN 2665-9336
  • E-ISSN: 2665-9344
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While the domain of toponymy has great research potential, it has so far gained little attention in Iran. The present paper is a typological study on a sample group of toponyms from two different provinces of Gilan (a northern coastal province next to the Caspian Sea) and Bushehr (a southern coastal province beside the Persian Gulf) within the framework of the Australian National Placenames Survey typology proposed by Tent and Blair. The two regions in question are similar in terms of adjacency to a major water body but different in language, culture, and geography. To determine whether the Australian proposed typology is applicable to Iranian toponyms, we collected 60 coastal placenames from Gilan and Bushehr and classified them according to their Specifics and Generics based on Tent and Blair’s (20092011) typology. Further, we compared placenaming motivations and processes in the two regions. The results show that although the Iranian placenames differ from the Australian ones in terms of their structure, they fit well into the typology. Water-related features are among the top motivations for local namers in both Gilan and Bushehr. Nevertheless, Bushehr namers are more motivated by natural features while those from Gilan, in most cases, are non-naturally motivated.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): Bushehr; Gilan; Iran; mechanisms; motivations; toponymy; typology
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