Byzantium (bᵻˈzæntiəm,_-ʃəm) or Byzantion (Βυζάντιον) was an ancient Greek city in classical antiquity that became known as Constantinople in late antiquity and Istanbul today. The Greek name Byzantion and its Latinization Byzantium continued to be used as a name of Constantinople sporadically and to varying degrees during the thousand year existence of the Byzantine Empire. Byzantium was colonized by Greeks from Megara in the 7th century BC and remained primarily Greek-speaking until its conquest by the Ottoman Empire in AD 1453.
The etymology of Byzantium is unknown. It has been suggested that the name is of Thracian origin. It may be derived from the Thracian personal name Byzas which means "he-goat". Ancient Greek legend refers to the Greek king Byzas, the leader of the Megarian colonists and founder of the city. The name Lygos for the city, which likely corresponds to an earlier Thracian settlement, is mentioned by Pliny the Elder in his Na