Mountains have been a source of adventure, wonder, struggle, and livelihood since the dawn of humanity. They are bestowed with epic names such as Mawenzi (“the crumpled, jagged, broken one”), Aconcagua (“sentinel of stone”), and Chomolungma (“goddess mother of mountains”). Humanity has even granted powerful names to extraterrestrial mountains. For example, the highest mountain in the Milky Way (69,841 feet, over twice the height of Everest!) is called Olympus Mons, which is Latin for “Mount Olympus”, home of the gods in Greek mythology.
The tallest known mountain in the solar system, Rheasilvia, rises up 14 miles from the center of a colossal crater on the asteroid Vesta. It is named after the mythological Vestal virgin and mother of the founders of Rome, Romulus, and Remus. This infographic explores the etymology of the 10 highest mountains on every continent, offering fascinating insights into the culture, history, and mythology around the world. Etymology is the study of the origin of words as well as how meanings have evolved throughout history.