Last December, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced he was changing his country’s name from Turkey to Turkiye because it “represents and expresses the culture, civilization, and values of the Turkish nation in the best way.” “Made in Turkiye” will appear on the country’s exports, and its official tourism website URL has been changed to GoTurkiye.com.
Turkey, on the other hand, remains the official name of Meleagris, a lovely and delicious bird native to North America but tasting just as good everywhere else.
It has been suggested that the reason behind Erdogan’s move is not the positive stuff about the culture and civilization, blah blah, especially because the huge Asian ethnic group associated with Erdogan’s is called simply Turkmens, no unusual spelling there.
No, the real reason is the prevalence of very insulting synonyms for Turkey in the English language, and we all know tyrants are thin-skinned when it comes to public humiliation. For instance, thesaurus.com offered these synonyms for “Turkey,” not one of them a compliment:
Or, as the GoTurkiye.com website puts it: Make Room For Good New Memories in Türkiye in 2021.
Yes, they’ll get around to updating it at some point.