Oddly, hreiðr can mean "bird's nest" and perhaps it was a kenning for the Goths tradition of moving and "nesting" in new territories, but hreið- is also a name-prefix meaning "beautiful", "eager", "great", "famous", "noble". Another possibility is that it was originally reið "ride, journey" (see Raidô). The use of the prefix is simple as the same tribal name was used for the Gutes of Gotland. The identification of the territory varies between the sources. This is the list of meanings given by Nordisk familjebok:
The second edition of Nordisk familjebok explains that Hreidgoths was originally applied to the Ostrogoths in south-eastern Europe. It appears as hraiðgutum on the Rök Stone in Östergötland. In Hervarar saga, the name Hreiðgotaland is applied to the territories of the Ostrogoths in south-eastern Europe. In Widsith, the traveller has been with the Hreðgotum. In Snorri's Edda, it is either applied to Jutland or to Scandinavia as a whole, while the islands are called Eygotaland. In the Legendary sagas however, Eygotaland is used only for the island of Gotland in the Baltic Sea.