From «eis tin Polin» to Istanbul…

From the phrase «Eis tin Polin» (meaning in greek= «to the City») we arrived at the turkish name «Is-tan-bul» (Wikipedia):

The modern Turkish name İstanbul (pronounced [isˈtanbul]) derives from the Greek phrase «εις την Πόλιν» or «στην Πόλη» [(i)stimboli(n)], both meaning «in the city» or «to the city»; It is thus based on the common Greek usage of referring to Constantinople simply as The City. The incorporation of parts of articles and other particles into Greek placenames was common even before the Ottoman period, Navarino for earlier Avarino, Satines for Athines, etc. Similar examples of modern Turkish placenames derived from Greek in this fashion are İzmit, earlier İznikmit, from Greek Nicomedia, İznik from Greek Nicaea ([iz nikea]), Samsun (s’Amison = «se + Amisos»), and İstanköy for the Greek island Kos (from is tin Ko). The occurrence of the initial i- in these names may partly reflect the old Greek form with is-, or it may partly be an effect of secondary epenthesis, resulting from the phonotactic structure of Turkish. İstanbul was the common name for the city in normal speech in Turkish even since before the conquest of 1453, but in official use by the Ottoman authorities, other names such as Kostantiniyye were preferred in certain contexts. Thus, Kostantiniyye was used on coinage up to the late 17th and then again in the 19th century. The Ottoman chancelery and courts used Kostantiniyye as part of intricate formulae in expressing the place of origin of formal documents, such as be-Makam-ı Darü’s-Saltanat-ı Kostantiniyyetü’l-Mahrusâtü’l-Mahmiyye. In 19th century Turkish bookprinting it was also used in the impressum of books, in contrast to the foreign use of Constantinople. At the same time, however, İstanbul too was part of the official language, for instance in the titles of the highest Ottoman military commander (İstanbul ağası) and the highest civil magistrate (İstanbul efendisi) of the city. İstanbul and several other variant forms of the same name were also widely used in Ottoman literature and poetry. After the creation of the Republic of Turkey in 1923, the various alternative names besides İstanbul became obsolete in the Turkish language. With the Turkish Postal Service Law of March 28, 1930, the Turkish authorities officially requested foreigners to cease referring to the city with their traditional non-Turkish names (such as Constantinople, Tsarigrad, etc.) and to adopt Istanbul as the sole name also in their own languages. Letters or packages sent to «Constantinople» instead of «Istanbul» were no longer delivered by Turkey’s PTT, which contributed to the eventual worldwide adoption of the new name. In English the name is usually written «Istanbul». In modern Turkish the name is written «İstanbul» because in the Turkish alphabet dotted i (capital İ) is a different letter from dotless ı (capital I).

~ από Ταξιδιώτης στο Ιουνίου 19, 2010.

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