- a city in and the capital of Iowa, in the central part, on the Des Moines River.
- a river flowing SE from SW Minnesota through Iowa to the Mississippi River. About 530 miles (850 km) long.
- a state in the central United States: a part of the Midwest. 56,290 sq. mi. (145,790 sq. km). Capital: Des Moines. Abbreviation: IA (approved esp. for use with zip code), Ia., Io.
- a river flowing SE from N Iowa to the Mississippi River. 291 miles (470 km) long.
- a member of an American Indian people originally of Iowa, Missouri, and Minnesota but now of Oklahoma, Nebraska, and Kansas.
- the Siouan language spoken by the Iowa Indians.
- a city in S central Iowa: state capital. Pop: 196 093 (2003 est)
- a river in the N central US, rising in SW Minnesota and flowing southeast to join the Mississippi. Length: 861 km (535 miles)
- a state of the N central US, in the Midwest: consists of rolling plains crossed by many rivers, with the Missouri forming the western border and the Mississippi the eastern. Capital: Des Moines. Pop: 2 944 062 (2003 est). Area: 144 887 sq km (55 941 sq miles)Abbreviation: Ia., (with zip code) IA
Word Origin and History for des moines
organized as a U.S. territory 1838; admitted as a state 1846, ultimately from the name of the native people, of the Chiwere branch of the Aiouan family; said to be from Dakota ayuxba "sleepy ones."
city in Iowa, U.S., named for French Rivière des Moines, the river that flows past it, which traditionally is derived from French des moines "of the monks," in reference to missionaries, but this probably is a fur trappers' folk-etymologizing of a name of the native people who lived there.
The place appears in a 1673 text as Moinguena, and historians believe this represents Miami-Illinois mooyiinkweena, literally "shitface," from mooy "excrement" + iinkwee "face;" a name given by the Peoria Indians (whose name has itself become a sort of insult) to their western neighbors. It is not unusual for Indian peoples to have hostile or derogatory names for others, but this seems an extreme case.
Capital of Iowa and largest city in the state.