The word Larnaca derives from the Greek n. larnax, meaning: "coffer", "box", "chest", e.g. for household stores, "cinerary urn", "sarcophagus" or "coffin"; "drinking trough" and "chalice". An informal etymology, attributes the origin of the name to (sarcophagi) that were found in the area. Sophocles Hadjisavvas, a state archeologist, states that "[the city's U.S.] consul of the last quarter of the 19th century, claimed to have explored more than 3,000 tombs in the area of Larnaca, so-called after the immense number of sarcophagi found in the modern town". In the vernacular, Larnaca is also known as Scala (Greek: Σκάλα [ˈskala] from the word (Greek: σκάλα [ˈskala] a loanword from the Italian scala). During the Middle Ages, until the end of the 18th century, a small port-anchorage close to Larnaca Bay refers to maps, engravings, travel descriptions and documents as Scala di Saline and may account for this second name; (other names that appear in maps are include: Porto delle Salines, Rada delle Saline, Ponta delle Saline, Punta delle Salino, Golfo delle Saline, Port Salines, Selines, Salines, Le Seline, Le Salline, Saline, Salin, Salinas, Arnicho di Salinas, Port of Lazarus, Lazare [o], Marine, Marina, Commercio [customs]).