The Hungarians' own ethnonym to denote themselves in the Early Middle Ages is uncertain. The exonym "Hungarian" is thought to be derived from Oghur-Turkic On-Ogur (literally "Ten Arrows" or "Ten Tribes"). Another possible explanation comes from the Old Russian "Yugra" ("Югра"). It may refer to the Hungarians during a time when they dwelt east of the Ural Mountains along the natural borders of Europe and Asia before their conquest of the Carpathian Basin.
Prior to the Hungarian conquest of the Carpathian Basin in 895/6 and while they lived on the steppes of Eastern Europe east of the Carpathian Mountains, written sources called the Magyars "Hungarians", specifically: "Ungri" by Georgius Monachus in 837, "Ungri" by Annales Bertiniani in 862, and "Ungari" by the Annales ex Annalibus Iuvavensibus in 881. The Magyars/Hungarians probably belonged to the Onogur tribal alliance, and it is possible that they became its ethnic majority. In the Early Middle Ages, the Hungarians had many names, including "Węgrzy" (Polish), "Ungherese" (Italian), "Ungar" (German), and "Hungarus". The "H-" prefix is a later addition of Medieval Latin.
The Hungarian people refer to themselves by the demonym "Magyar" rather than "Hungarian". "Magyar" is Finno-Ugric from the Old Hungarian "mogyër". "Magyar" possibly derived from the name of the most prominent Hungarian tribe, the "Megyer". The tribal name "Megyer" became "Magyar" in reference to the Hungarian people as a whole. "Magyar" may also derive from the Hunnic "Muageris" or "Mugel".
The Greek cognate of "Tourkia" (Greek: Τουρκία) was used by the scholar and Byzantine Emperor Constantine VII "Porphyrogenitus" in his De Administrando Imperio of c. AD 950, though in his use, "Turks" always referred to Magyars. This was a misnomer, as while the Magyars had adopted some Turkic cultural traits, they are not a Turkic people.
The historical Latin phrase "Natio Hungarica" ("Hungarian nation") had a wider and political meaning because it once referred to all nobles of the Kingdom of Hungary, regardless of their ethnicity or mother tongue.