Hisbaal is the oldest name for Seville. It appears to have originated during the Phoenician colonisation of the Tartessian culture in south-western Iberia and it refers to the God Baal. According to Manuel Pellicer Catalán, the ancient name was Spal, and it meant "lowland" in the Phoenician language (similar to the Hebrew Shfela and cognate with Arabic Asfal أسفل). During Roman rule, the name was Latinised as Hispal and later as Hispalis. After the Umayyad invasion, this name was adapted into Arabic as Ishbiliyya (Arabic: إشبيلية): since p does not exist in Arabic, it was replaced by b; the Latin place-name suffix -is was replaced by its Arabic equivalent -iyya, and stressed a /æ/ turned into i /i/, due to the phonetic phenomenon called imāla.
NO8DO is the official motto of Seville, popularly believed to be a rebus signifying the Spanish No me ha dejado, meaning "She [Seville] has not abandoned me". The phrase, pronounced with synalepha as [no ma ðeˈxaðo], is spelled with an eight in the middle representing the word madeja [maˈðexa] "skein [of wool]". Legend states that the title was given by King Alfonso X, who was resident in the city's Alcázar and supported by the citizens when his son, later Sancho IV of Castille, tried to usurp the throne from him.
The emblem is present on Seville's municipal flag, and features on city property such as manhole covers, and Christopher Columbus' tomb in the Cathedral.