The name has alternative derivations in popular etymology.
In one, it is said to be derived from the Kannada kudu, meaning steep or hilly.
In the Puranas, Codagu may be the land called Krodha desa, meaning "Land of Anger" – the Codavas here are described as Mleccha, meaning foreigners.
It is also said that Codagu is derived from the word Codava, Cod means "give" and avva means "mother", i.e mother Cauvery, the river Cauvery.
The Dravidian Etymological Dictionary, however, treats the name as being etymologically related to Kurukh, the name the Oraon people use for themselves and their language, and suggests a possible connection with the common Dravidian. The form often used in English, Coorg is derived from this, by a transformation Madikeri to Mercara.
The people are called Kodava (sometimes pluralized as Kodavas in English). The people may also be called Coorgs or Coorgi in English.
The name of the language is Kodava Takk.