English translation (word)
English translation (etymon)
ἄστυ· ἡ κοινῶς πόλις. διαφέρει δέ, ὅτι τὸ μὲν κτίσμα δηλοῖ, ἡ δὲ πόλις καὶ τοὺς πολίτας. ἐκλήθη δὲ ἄστυ, ὡς Φιλόχορος [ι]α Ἀτθίδος, διὰ τὸ πρότερον νομάδας καὶ σποράδην ζῶντας τότε συνελθεῖν καὶ στῆναι ἐκ τῆς πλάνης εἰς τὰς κοινὰς οἰκήσεις, ὅθεν οὐ μετανεστήκασιν.
Astu "town": it is the city in general, but it differs from polis "city" because astu refers to the construction, whereas polis includes the citizens. It was called astu, as Philochorus says in the first book of his Attica, because people who previously were nomads and scattered at that time came together and set up there, stopping wandering to live together, from where they did not move afterwards.
This etymology is formally based on the phonetic similarity of the sequence [st] in ἄστυ and στῆναι. It is likely that the word is parsed as a compound with "intensive" ἀ- + στῆναι, but this is not explicit in Stephanus' formulation. From the semantic point of view, the explanation relies on the notion of synoecism which was well known to Greek historians and to which they attributed the birth of Athens in particular
Etym. Magnum, p. 160 (same quotation as in Stephanus); Etym. Gudianum Additamenta, alpha, p. 222 (idem)