During its four-century history,
New York City (also commonly known as New York) has been known by a variety of alternative names and euphemisms, both officially and unofficially. Frequently shortened to simply "NY" or "NYC", New York is also known as "The City" in some parts of the
Eastern United States, in particular,
New York State and surrounding U.S. states.
New Yorkers also use "The City" to refer specifically to the
 borough of
The Big Apple – first used as a reference to the city's prominence in
horse racing by
John J. Fitz Gerald during the 1920s but made popular by a 1970s advertisement campaign
The Capital of the World ( ) – popularized by the author
Caput Mundi E. B. White
 New York Mayor
The Center of the Universe
– particularly in reference to
 Times Square
 The City So Nice They Named It Twice – a reference to "New York, New York" as both the city and state, spoken by
Jon Hendricks in 1959 on a jazz cover of
Lorenz Hart and
Richard Rodgers' song "
George Russell's album
, New York, N.Y.
and popularized by New York-based
 late night talk show host
David Letterman, who also used the phrase "the town so nice, they named it twice."
The City That Never Sleeps – first recorded in full in newspaper articles in the early 1900s, including in 1907 in
Phoenix, Arizona in reference to New York's evening mail delivery and in 1912 in
Fort Wayne, Indiana about New York's new electric and gas lighting,
though also recorded in similar forms in reference to the nightlife in neighborhoods like the Bowery as early as 1892 and likely in use during the 1880s. 
 John Kander and Fred Ebb's song "
New York, New York" from the
Martin Scorsese 1977
film of the same name.
 The Empire City – derived from
George Washington in the alleged quote "Surely this is the seat of the empire!" though first published in an 1836 newspaper as "the Empire City of the New World";
also in reference to New York City's status as the most populous city in
 New York State,
whose primary nickname is  The
. Empire State
The Five Boroughs – a reference to the counties that consolidated into New York City in 1898, and often used to distinguish the
city proper from
Manhattan alone or the
New York metropolitan area
The Gay Capital of the World – a reference to New York City’s outsized influence upon
LGBT culture worldwide
 Gotham – first used by
Washington Irving in his satirical periodical
in November 1807 as an allusion to the tale of the
Salmagundi Wise Men of Gotham, and made popular as
Gotham City, the location of
Batman comics, first specified in December 1940's Batman #4, written by
 The Greatest City in the World – reflective of the city's overall global prominence and cultural diversity,
and popularized by the song 
The Schuyler Sisters Lin-Manuel Miranda's musical
The Melting Pot – a reference to the wide variety of ethnicities and language groups in the city, and popularized by various authors including playwright
Israel Zangwill in his 1908 play
The Melting Pot Metropolis – popularized as
the location of
Superman comics, first specified in 1939 and itself an allusion to the setting of the
Fritz Lang film
used to describe New York City in the daytime, in contrast to  Gotham, sometimes used to describe New York City at night.
America's City – a term positioning New York City as emblematic of the country post
9/11, as its premier
 Fun City – taken from a phrase in 1966 uttered by then mayor
John Lindsay in response to being asked if he still liked being mayor during a crippling transit strike.
This nickname was also later derisively played on by NYPD's largest police union, who used the term "Fear City" in response to city budget cutbacks during the 1970s. 
 The Modern
Gomorrah – referring to the "sinfulness" and organized crime of
Manhattan, first popularized by Reverend
Thomas De Witt Talmage in 1875 at the
Names by which the parts of New York City in
Lower Manhattan were officially deemed during the 17th century included:
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