In 711 CE, Umayyads from North Africa conquered the Iberian peninsula and ruled large chunks Spain and Portugal for almost eight more centuries. These Muslims in particular were known as Moors, a word which comes from a French apellation, more. More occasionally took the form of maure, and it comes from Latin Maurus, which described anyone from the North African region of Mauritania- that's also where the word Mauritania comes from. Beyond that, maurus is from Greek mauros, which most likely meant "black", but we're not a hundred percent sure. Time for some fun facts! This interpretation of moor has nothing to do with the "fasten" or "uncultivated land" definitions (those are Germanic), and the Latin name Maurus actually covered parts of modern-day Algeria and Morocco, but not the current country of Mauritania.
Hello! I'm Adam Aleksic. This year, I graduated from Harvard University with a degree in Government and Linguistics. There, I co-founded the Harvard Undergraduate Linguistics Society and wrote a thesis on Serbo-Croatian language policy, magna cum laude. In addition to etymology, I also really enjoy philosophy, trivia, vexillology, geography, board games, conlanging, art history, and law.