This new type of geographical dictionary lists past and present alternate names of more than 7,000 places. It focuses particularly on placenames with official or semiofficial status rather than nicknames or colloquial abbreviations. Alternate placenames are important for historical and geographical reasons, and although they predominate in countries that have undergone wars and invasions, such alternate names can equally well result from political or administrative changes. In addition to the factual data related to each entry, the dictionary also comments on names and their origins where appropriate. Appendices focus on placenames in non-English languages and on places which have been renamed in fictional works.