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Eventually the original Spanish name was restored and used in the shortened form, "Nevis".
The island of Nevis upon first British settlement was referred to as "Dulcina", a name meaning "sweet one" in Spanish.
Saint Kitts was named "Liamuiga", which roughly translates as "fertile land", by the Kalinago Indians who originally inhabited the island. Christopher Columbus upon sighting what is now Nevis in 1493 gave that island the name San Martín.
The current name "Nevis" is derived from a Spanish name Nuestra Señora de las Nieves. It is not known who chose this name for the island, but it is a reference to the story of a fourth-century Catholic miracle: a summertime snowfall on the Esquiline Hill in Rome.
As Spanish power went into decline, Saint Kitts became the premier base for English and French expansion into the Caribbean. Kitts the British settled the islands of Antigua, Montserrat, Anguilla and Tortola, and the French settled Martinique, the Guadeloupe archipelago and St. During the late 17th century France and England battled for control over St Kitts. Although small in size and separated by only 2 miles (3 km) of water, the two islands were viewed and governed as different states until the late 19th century, when they were forcibly unified along with the island of Anguilla, by the British.
To this day relations are strained, with Nevis accusing Saint Kitts of neglecting its needs.