Why is New York City known as “the Big Apple” and “Gotham”?

New York City goes by many names, such as the “City that Never Sleeps” and the less humble “Center of the Universe.” But the Big Apple is the most kenspeckled.

There are many rumors about the history of the nickname. Did the city used to be filled with apple orchards? Does the name originate with a brothel madam named Eve?

Actually, the widespread use of the nickname began in the 1970s as part of an official tourism campaign.

Before that, John Joseph Fitz Gerald, a turf racing writer for the New York Morning Telegraph in the 1920s, used the name in his column. While in New Orleans, he heard stable hands refer to New York as “the big apple that all horsemen aspired to race at.”

Soon writers began using the term to refer to New York in other contexts. Soon, a popular song and dance in the 1930s used the expression.

The corner of West 54th Street and Broadway, where Fitz Gerald lived, was officially designated “Big Apple Corner.”

The most populous city in the U.S. also goes by the name Gotham, which was first used by Washington Irving in an 1807 issue of his literary magazine about the legends of an English village named Gotham.

On the topic of Washington Irving and the island of Manhattan, what does the ”knicks” in the New York Knicks stand for? It’s a surprise that has absolutely nothing to do with basketball. Click here for the answer.

DOC HOLIDAY: Get the Key to paradise; He solves your travel problems.(Features)

Sunday Mirror (London, England) March 16, 2003 Q MY husband and I are planning to go to Florida later this year for our wedding anniversary. I’ve looked through a few brochures and everything seems to be geared up to Disney and the other theme parks. Even the hotels on the coast all appear to be for people with young families – we don’t have children. Can you recommend somewhere quiet and a bit more exclusive? – Jayne Richardson, Swindon, Wilts AFLORIDA is one big playground and anywhere around Orlando or the Gulf Coast resort of St Petersburg will be geared up for families. However, there are plenty of quieter, more romantic places to head for. web site beaches in florida

The Florida Keys are a great place to unwind. Try the Cheeca Lodge Hotel in Islamorada, about half-way down the Keys. It has a white-sand beach, a good restaurant and some famous clients. In Key West, the Pier House Hotel and Spa is in a great position overlooking Duval Street and the glorious sunsets. Some of the rooms have been restored in colonial style with rocking chairs and antique four-posters.

On the Gulf Coast, you could try the Colony Beach and Tennis Resort on Longboat Key near Sarasota. Every room is a suite and the hotel has a free spa, loads of tennis courts with expert tuition, if you’re feeling energetic, and it’s on one of the nicest beaches in Florida. There’s a good website with links to these and other quiet hotels in Florida – www.flausa.com ATHE 18-30s-style holidays aren’t that bad. My son went on one to Ibiza a few years back and, while he came back looking as white as a sheet, I felt happier knowing there were reps around to scrape him off the floor and make sure he got back to his room all right. However, I see your point. see here beaches in florida

Why not try Corfu? It’s a beautiful island, with long, hot summers and the nightlife is wild, particularly around Kavos in the south. You don’t have to be part of the 18-30s scene, though. If you rent an apartment close to all the action, you can come and go as you please.

Try Kosmar Holidays (0870 70000 747, www.kosmar.co.uk) who have several studios and apartments in and around Kavos. Prices start from around pounds 280 per person for a week in July, including flights and transfers.

ATHE Hong Kong Sevens, well known for the partying off the pitch as well as the action on it, takes place on March 28-30. Flight Centre is offering a four-night tour from pounds 1,089 per person for the three-day tournament, departing from London on March 27. Price includes flights and four-night accommodation at the 3-star Wesley Hotel in the heart of Wanchai. Rugby tickets for the three days are included in the price. Call Flight Centre on 08708 900 822.


Florida’s Key West has great hotels and is a fabulous place to unwind; FUN TIME: Corfu

1-800-Flowers.com Offers Happy Hour Bouquets

Wireless News August 8, 2011

Wireless News 08-08-2011 1-800-Flowers.com Offers Happy Hour Bouquets Type: News

1-800-Flowers.com, an online florist and gift shop, has expanded its collection of Happy Hour Bouquets to include six new original and fresh floral arrangements.

Inspired by classic cocktails, including margaritas, sangrias and martinis, these new hand-crafted floral bouquets in 9″ reusable and food safe acrylic martini and margarita shaped vases are the perfect way to stir up excitement, whether it’s to toast a special occasion, say “thank you,” or even serve as home decor for a summer soiree.

“We created the Happy Hour Bouquets to provide our customers with a fun and refreshing way to celebrate life’s special moments,” said Jim McCann, CEO and Founder of 1-800-Flowers.com. “The Happy Hour Bouquets collection was designed to deliver smiles to all your friends and family, and make every hour a Happy Hour.” go to website lemon drop martini

Consumers can choose from the following “menu” of exclusive floral cocktail-inspired arrangements, which are created with a variety of fresh flowers and adorned with whimsical accessories: this web site lemon drop martini

- Margarita Bouquet: Mixed with yellow roses, green carnations, green spider mums, poms and hypericum, this fresh floral arrangement is accented with realistic green lime slices and green straws. It is an unforgettable gift that will keep the party going.

- Apple Martini Bouquet: Make friends green with envy with this truly original floral arrangement. Inspired by the popular Appletini, this arrangement is made up of the freshest green carnations and poms with alstroemeria and fresh greenery. This recipe is accented with straws and green apple picks, sure to shake up any occasion.

- Sangria Bouquet: Spice things up with our fresh floral version of the popular wine punch. Complete with roses, carnations, alstroemeria, poms and statice, this chic bouquet also includes slices of realistic fruit picks for a truly one-of-a-kind arrangement.

- Lemon Martini Bouquet: Send sunny sophistication with the truly original Happy Hour Bouquet, inspired by the famous Lemon Drop Martini. This floral arrangement is mixed with cheerful yellow roses, daisies, alstroemeria and solidago.

- Blue Hawaiian Floral Margarita: The freshest roses, Dendrobium orchids, alstroemeria, daisy poms and solidago are topped with a faux pineapple pick, straws and a paper umbrella to make any celebration an exotic affair.

- Strawberry Floral Margarita: Fresh, fun, and fabulous all over, this stylishly sweet arrangement of roses, asters, carnations and dianthus gets the party started with a touch of pink perfection.

More Information:


  1. Mike -  March 21, 2012 - 9:22 pm

    Off topic, but have to say … many of your “hot word” blog post headlines (including the one for this blog) include the question mark (?) inside quoted material. Question marks and exclamation points go outside quoted material (unless they apply to the quoted material). For example, the headline at top means people call New York City, the Gotham? city. Conversely, periods and commas always go inside quoted material. Thank you! Great Web site!

    By the way, I would love to work for Dictionary.com as a copy editor and/or proofreader! Please feel free to contact me (you should have my e-mail address)! Thank you!

  2. Rebecca -  November 26, 2011 - 3:59 pm

    In Spanish, a large city block is called a Manzana. Manhattan is a big square island. Hence, the Big Apple. It works for me. Better than jazz and racing.

  3. christian -  June 27, 2011 - 8:44 am

    i have never beeen to new york but i think its cool

  4. MARK -  June 17, 2011 - 6:46 am

    @ Mark V no “gotham” and new york city are the same. the nickname was used for manhattan long before the comics came out with gotham as a city. like the wayne empire was talking about the vanderbuilts who owned the only operating rail line in manhattan, and ……. blah blah, all the spin offs that came after, but gotham was talking about new york city, …. and to the one who said detroit is called gotham, good luck with that, new york was nicknamed gotham long before people used it in detroit.

  5. Curly -  November 21, 2010 - 7:58 am

    Oh, I get it! They’re trackbacks.

    Please forgive my idiocy.

  6. NuttierThanSquirrelPoo -  November 3, 2010 - 3:50 pm

    New York doesn’t deserve nay nicknames except “Nude Orc” because that’s what people there basically look like.

  7. Nelson -  November 3, 2010 - 2:56 pm

    Very Interesting. I’m a ESL Student I’m learning a lot.

  8. camcam -  September 21, 2010 - 9:13 am

    must be one biiiig apple…

  9. Curly Hair -  September 15, 2010 - 8:46 pm


    “Every other posting has simply appeared or not”? What’s that supposed to mean? They just appear on their own? I’m still confused….

  10. mark V -  September 14, 2010 - 3:56 pm

    Batmans always blurred that line, being a ‘Chaotic Good’ aligned character though.

  11. junkfood lover -  September 14, 2010 - 3:12 am

    Spiderman is more coloful than Batman of Christopher Nolan in which darkness dominates the space. I guess nowdays the hero movies cannot divide the good from the evil as crystal clear as it used to be. Huh, are’nt we living the time of responsibility with moral pricks.

  12. Saf -  September 13, 2010 - 2:00 pm

    @Curly Hair

    I’ve never visited their website (mayopia.com), but I’m pretty sure that they’re taking the subject matter from the Hot Word Blog and spinning it into poetry. The elipses are mostly likely because to denote that you are reading an excerpt. At least that’s always been my assumption.


  13. Mark V -  September 13, 2010 - 7:56 am

    Im quite certain “Gotham” and “New york” are entirly different cities, otherwise Batman and Spiderman would cross paths more.

  14. AMY-LOU -  September 13, 2010 - 5:36 am

    Adam you comment “When I was incited to have a bite on a apple in my dream, the apple has became a demanding, nagging, and lovely wife of the middle life crisis who I never had in my life since I have been a bachelor.” I may not be right but i think your dream ment you were longing for a wife, but you are scared to leave the life of a bachelor behind and get married.

  15. MANHATTAN | BLOGCHI@mayopia.com -  September 12, 2010 - 6:46 am

    [...] York City is much bigger than “Manhattan” — We look at the Island as the core and the other BOROUGHS as the skin. — The problem [...]

  16. Fred -  September 12, 2010 - 6:18 am

    Dear Curly Hair, C/O THW /MANHADTAN

    This is the first comment I’ve ever posted. Every other posting has simply appeared or not: Edited and without subaudition links.

  17. Lauryn -  September 11, 2010 - 8:21 pm

    @ Adam- What the hell are you talking about? That’s the worst sentence I’ve ever read. It’s funny yet sad because I think you really had something to say but, you jacked it up. :-(

  18. Curly Hair -  September 11, 2010 - 7:39 pm

    Attention BLOGCHI@mayopia.com!

    Would you please tell me exactly why all your comments are impossible to understand, seeing as they contain random phrases (that pertain to the subject matter, yes, but nevertheless don’t seem to make much sense) interspersed with ellipses? The fact that you keep commenting seems to say that you have points you would like to get across, but as far as I can tell, you’re not accomplishing that. Please explain to me what you mean by all your strange-looking comments.

  19. Terry -  September 11, 2010 - 7:30 pm

    I guess horses like apples……

  20. Adam -  September 11, 2010 - 6:50 pm

    When I was incited to have a bite on a apple in my dream, the apple has became a demanding, nagging, and lovely wife of the middle life crisis who I never had in my life since I have been a bachelor.

  21. suberbian of Tokyo -  September 11, 2010 - 6:42 pm

    When I was sightseeing in N.Y. holding a map in my hand, I asked strangers in the street pointing my destination in the map, I only found that they were also visitors to the Big Apple!

    What would be the probability to hit tourists three times in a row?

    I should have got about the city more often when I was there, but I even have not visited new establishements and sightseeing spots back here.

  22. Janice-MarieSmith -  September 11, 2010 - 5:15 pm

    I’ve always heard ROTTEN APPLE. Gotham is the nickname for Detroit.

  23. seymour -  September 11, 2010 - 4:16 pm

    erdos – horses love munchin on apples – makes em happy ‘n run faster

  24. Tiger -  September 11, 2010 - 12:14 pm

    John Joseph Fitz Gerald, any relation to F. Scott Fitzgerald?

  25. vs pan -  September 11, 2010 - 11:23 am

    I am from china.This is a great way to learn Englis and knowledge.I wish I can learn some new vocabulary and interesting story everyday.


    VS Pan

  26. erdos -  September 11, 2010 - 8:57 am

    What is the relationship between apples and horse racing?

  27. Tiger -  September 11, 2010 - 8:05 am

    John Joseph Fitz Gerald, any relation to F. Scott Fitzgerald?

    When life gives you lemons make grape juice and leave the world to wonder how the heck you did it…

  28. Shah Danyal -  September 11, 2010 - 7:23 am

    It is interesting that in English folk stories, people from Gotham a part of Nottingham, were thought to be simple and stupid.

  29. Kim -  September 11, 2010 - 7:04 am

    Buenos Aires is also referred to as the Big Apple

  30. VAL STEFFAN -  September 11, 2010 - 2:47 am

    I thought the great sax player Lester Young coined the phrase “Big


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