The name of the continent of Asia was derived from a word in Ancient Greek and was used in Herodutus' Histories in 440 B.C. It is speculated that the name was in use long before its first appearance in text, but may have initially referred to only a small area of land on the eastern end of the Aegean Sea in an area referred to as Assuwa by the Hittites.Continue Reading
The origin of the name Asia may have roots that lie further back in history with possible derivations which are Aegean, Akkadian or Phoenician in nature. The Aegean word "Asis" was first used to refer to the eastern shore of the Aegean Sea. A potential Akkadian root is in the word "asu" which may mean "light" or "rising", which is thought to refer to the sunrise which rises from the east. The Phoenician word "asu," meaning "east," is another possible root for the Greek usage of Asia. When combined, the two meanings of "Asu" would mean that Asia refers to "the land of the sunrise."
The Romans also adopted the usage of "Asia" and further divided the continent into two provinces, "Asia Minor" and "Asia Major." Asia shares its name with a female deity in Greek legend.Learn more about Asia
Southern Asia is more mountainous than northern Asia; the majority of the latter is dominated by the relatively flat tundra of Russia, with only the Ural Mountains rising in the far western area of the continent. In contrast, southern Asia features five major mountain ranges.Full Answer >
Asia is in the Northern hemisphere, except for parts of Indonesia. Asia is the largest and most populated of the seven continents. Asia also lies entirely in the Eastern hemisphere.Full Answer >
The archipelago of Asia forms the largest group of islands in the world and is called the Malay Archipelago. The archipelago is made up of 17,000 islands belonging to Indonesia, 7,000 belonging to the Philippines and the island of New Guinea.Full Answer >
Asia has a wide variety of climates because of its huge size. Asia has some of the coldest places in the world as well as some of the hottest, driest and wettest places.Full Answer >