Istanbul (Turkish İstanbul - [isˈtanbuɫ]), formerly known as Byzantium (Greek Βυζάντιον), then Constantinople (Greek Κωνσταντινούπολη) is the largest city in Turkey, the economic, historical and cultural center of the country. Located in Eurasia, on the shores of the Bosphorus Strait (which separates Europe and Asia), between the Sea of Marmara and the Black Sea. The European (main) and Asian parts of the city are connected by bridges and tunnels. With a population of over 15 million people, Istanbul is one of the most populated cities in the world. The former capital of the Roman, East Roman (Byzantine), Latin and Ottoman empires. Istanbul is not the capital of Turkey. In 1923, after the Turkish War of Independence, Ankara became the new Turkish capital.
It was founded under the name of Byzantium (ancient Greek Βυζάντιον) at Cape Sarayburnu around 660 BC. NS. The city occupied a strategic position between the Black and Mediterranean Seas. He was also on the historic Silk Road.
In the 7th century BC, the city of Byzantium was founded by colonists, mainly from the Greek city of Megara. In 330, the Roman emperor Constantine I the Great moved the capital of the Roman Empire to Byzantium, which was given the name New Rome, but this name did not take root, and soon the capital was called Constantinople - the city of Constantine. In the 13th century, the Arabs used the name Istinpolin, which goes back to the Greek phrase. εἰς τὴν Πόλι (ν) ("istin pόli (n)", "istim bόli (n)") - to the city (e). This is where the modern name might have come from. According to another version, it comes from Islambul (the city of Islam), which, however, raises doubts in connection with the existence of the aforementioned name Istinpolin, which is consonant with the modern one, even before the fall of Constantinople in 1453 Firman 1760/1 was not implemented, as an official one established what was already encountered in the documents of the 15th century. the name Islambol, that is, filled with Islam. Since the end of the 18th century, in European countries, including Russia, a distorted form has come into use: Istanbul. Formally, the city, after its capture by the Turks and the transfer of the capital of the empire there, was not renamed: for the Turks, it was and remained Istanbul, and for the Greeks - Constantinople (in