New York City. The nickname was popularized by Washington Irving and others in Salmagundi, a series of satirical sketches (1807-1808), and makes reference to English popular tales about Gotham, a village near Nottingham, England, whose villagers were depicted as feigning stupidity and foolishness in order to avoid government impositions.
Gotham·ite′ (-ə-mīt′) n.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.