Cuban capital city, founded 1514 by Diego Velázquez as San Cristóbal de la Habana "St. Christopher of the Habana," apparently the name of a local native people. The Spanish adjective form is Habanero. Meaning "cigar made in Havana" is by 1826.
city in northern Italy, Italian Torino, Roman Augusta Taurinorum, probably from the Taurini, a Ligurian people who had a capital there, the name perhaps from Celtic *tauro "mountain" or *tur "water," but long interpreted by folk etymology as from Latin taurus "bull."
former name of Jakarta, capital of Indonesia, when it was the Dutch East Indies, a colony of the Netherlands; from Batavia, an ancient name for a region of Holland at the mouth of the Rhine, from Latin Batavi, a people who dwelt between the Rhine and the Waal on the island of Betawe. Related: Batavian.
city in California, U.S., formerly the Spanish Pacific capital, named for the bay, which was named 1603 for Spanish colonist and viceroy of New Spain Conde de Monterrey. The Monterrey in Mexico also is named for him.
1690s, capital of the Philippines, said to be from Tagalog may "there is" + nila "shrub of the indigo family," but this last element would not be a native word. It gave its name (with altered spelling) to manilla hemp (1814), the original source of manilla paper (1832); see manilla (1).
Hungarian capital, formed 1872 from merger of two cities on opposite shores of the Danube, Buda (probably from a word originally meaning "water") + Pest, a Hungarian word meaning "furnace, oven, cove," also in Slavic (compare Russian pech'). Ofen, literally "oven," was the old German name for the place.
capital of the Bahamas, a name attested from 1690s, given in honor of King William III of England (1650-1702), of the House of Orange-Nassau, from the duchy of Nassau in western Germany, named for a village in the Lahn valley, from Old High German nass "wet." Related: Nassauvian.
U.S. capital, founded 1791, named for President George Washington (1732-1799); the family name is from a town in northeastern England, from Old English, literally "estate of a man named Wassa." The U.S. state was named when it was formed as a territory in 1853 (admitted to the union 1889). Related: Washingtonian.
ancient Greek settlement in Thrace on the European side of the Bosphorus, said to be named for its 7c. B.C.E. founder, Byzas of Megara. A place of little consequence until 330 C.E., when Constantine the Great re-founded it and made it his capital (see Constantinople).
Persian Gulf country, named for its capital city (said to have been founded in current form 1705), which is from Arabic al-kuwayt, diminutive of kut, a word used in southern Iraq and eastern Arabia for a fortress-like house surrounded by a settlement and protected by encircling water, and said to be ultimately from Persian. Related: Kuwaiti.