18th-century map with the Japanese capital "Meaco"
In Japanese, Kyoto was previously called Kyō (京), Miyako (都), or Kyō no Miyako (京の都). In the 11th century, the city was renamed Kyoto ("capital city"), from the Chinese calligraphic, jingdu (京都). After the city of Edo was renamed Tokyo (東京, meaning "Eastern Capital") in 1868, and the seat of the Emperor was moved there, Kyoto was for a short time known as Saikyō (西京, meaning "Western Capital"). Kyoto is also sometimes called the thousand-year capital (千年の都).
The National Diet never officially passed any law designating a capital.
Foreign spellings for the city's name have included Kioto, Miaco and Meaco, utilised mainly by Dutch cartographers. Another term commonly used to refer to the city in the pre-modern period was Keishi (京師), meaning "urba" or "capital".