The word Taksim means “division” or “distribution”.
The Taksim square was originally the point where the main water lines from the north of Istanbul were collected and branched off to other parts of the city (hence the name.) This use for the area was established by Sultan Mahmud I. The square takes its name from the Ottoman era stone reservoir which is located in this area. Additionally, the word “Taksim” can refer to a special improvisational musical form in Turkish classical music that is guided by the Makam system. Another significant building that once stood on the square was the 19th century Taksim Artillery Barracks (Taksim Topçu Kışlası, which later became the Taksim Stadium), but it was demolished in 1940 during the construction works of the Taksim Park (Taksim Gezi Parkı.)