Definitions

from The American HeritageĀ® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • A country of western Africa on the Gulf of Guinea. A variety of states were established in the region prior to the arrival of Europeans, including the Bornu, Benin, and Songhai empires. Exploited by Portuguese, British, French, and Dutch traders in the 17th and 18th centuries, Nigeria was eventually claimed by the British, who consolidated the area into one colony in 1914. The country attained its independence in 1960. Abuja is the official capital (since 1991), but many government offices remain in Lagos, the former capital and the largest city. Population: 135,000,000.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • proper n. Country in Western Africa, south of the country of Niger. Official name: Federal Republic of Nigeria.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a republic in West Africa on the Gulf of Guinea; gained independence from Britain in 1960; most populous African country

Etymologies

Named after the Niger River, from a native term "Ni Gir" (meaning "River Gir"). The name has often been misinterpreted as derived from the Latin nigerĀ ("black"), a reference to the dark complexions of the inhabitants of the region. (Wiktionary)

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