Quiz for the week: We settled the question of which came first, the chicken or the egg, so now we extend the query of which came first; the turkey or the country of Turkey.
Drum roll, and envelope please: The answer is Turkey, the country.
The birds are native to North America and got their name of turkey when the Spanish brought them back to the continent. The English thought they were Guinea Hens, a bird brought from Africa by Turkish traders and named them after their source. For a really good in-depth discussion of how both the country and the bird were named check out one of our favorite on line columns at Straight Dope: http://www.straightdope.com/columns/read/1972/is-turkey-the-bird-named-after-turkey-the-country-or-vice-versa.