Q:

How did Rhode Island get its name?

A:

The name Rhode Island originated when the explorer Giovanni de Verrazzano wrote a letter detailing his exploration of the state in 1524 and compared the area to the Island of Rhodes in Greece. The name was made official in 1644, according to the Rhode Island Historical Society.

English colonists who settled there called the area Rode Island, as is noted in a letter written in 1637 by Roger Williams, the founder of the state. The state received a royal charter from King Charles the II of England in 1663, and was called the Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations. As of 2014, the state has retained the full name and is officially the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, the longest name of any state in the United States.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    When was Rhode Island founded?

    A:

    Rhode Island was founded in 1636 and was granted statehood on May 29, 1790. Its founder, Roger Williams, had been previously banished from Massachusetts because of his views on the separation of church and state.

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  • Q:

    How big is Rhode Island?

    A:

    Rhode Island is the smallest state in the United States, covering 1,214 square miles. The state is 48 miles from north to south and 37 miles from east to west.

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    How did Eisenhower get the name "Ike"?

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    As reported by his family members, every son in Dwight Eisenhower's nuclear family growing up was called "Ike" at some point in their lives. He was called "Little Ike" and his brother, Edgar, was "Big Ike."

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    How did America get its name?

    A:

    The most common theory about the origin of America's name is that the country is named after Amerigo Vespucci, an Italian explorer who reached the New World in 1502. After returning to Florence, he suspected that Christopher Columbus was not correct in assuming that the land he explored was part of Japan and India. He produced a pamphlet describing the New World, which gained Vespucci a namesake.

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