Infographic Reveals Origins Of Toronto’s Unique Neighbourhood Names

Photo by Scott Webb on Unsplash

Torontonians know the city has some pretty unique names for its neighbourhoods. From Long Branch to Cabbagetown, we’ve accepted these monikers as normal without realizing their true origin. 

But one Reddit user took the liberty of diving into Toronto’s hidden etymologies to expose their true meanings. 

READ: 6 Toronto Neighbourhoods Tourists Won’t Regret Staying In

From the infographic we can see that there are three ways a neighbourhood name was derived: from another language, a prominent person, or a geographical location or historical event. 

I made an infographic explaining the origins behind some of Toronto’s neighborhood names from r/toronto

Some standouts include Mimico, which comes from the Ojibwe word omiimiikaa meaning “with many wild pigeons,” Don Valley, which was named after a river in England that was named for a Celtic goddess, and Kensington Market, which was named after London, U.K.’s Kensington district.

READ: Major Renovations At Dufferin Grove Park Will Put Community First

Of course, not every single Toronto neighbourhood was included in the infographic by etymologynerd. One Reddit user was quick to point out that Roncesvalles and Sorauren were missed. Both neighbourhoods got their names from the Napoleonic wars the battle of Roncesvalles Gorge and the battle of Sorauren.

Obviously, there was no way I could include each of Toronto’s 100+ neighborhoods, so I tried to include the most important and most interesting ones,” the creator wrote on Reddit. “This means many more obvious, boring, and obscure etymologies were omitted.”

READ: The Best Neighbourhoods In Toronto For Singles Looking To Mingle

The infographic should be taken with a grain of salt, too. Etymologynerd also noted that they are a high school senior from New York state, “so it’s quite possible I screwed something up.” 

The graphic, for example, incorrectly states the origin of the name Toronto. The city’s moniker actually comes from an Anglicized Mohawk word tkaronto or taronto, which was used to describe “where trees grow in shallow water,” according to BlogTO. 

READ: These Are The Best Toronto Farmers’ Markets Near You

But regardless, the graphic is still an impressive look at the city’s neighbourhood names. After all, who knew Cabbagetown was actually named after the vegetable thanks to Irish immigrants?

More from Isabelle Khoo

GO Transit Is Expanding To Give Commuters More Options

Big changes are coming to GO Transit in April. But don’t worry,...
Read More