De Ville Byzantium 2004 – In addition to offering a striking new design, Omega’s latest gents’ creation is symbolic of the brand’s global presence, which spans numerous regions and cultures. The name has been specifically chosen for its association with the one city that has through the ages been the meeting point of East and West: today’s Istanbul, yesterday’s Constantinople and history’s Byzantium.
The watch’s square case in stainless-steel measures 33.4 mm by 33.4 mm and has a case back fixed with screws that helps guarantee water resistance to 50 metres / 167 feet. The most distinctive touch is undoubtedly provided by the facetted triangular lugs with contrasting brushed and polished faces, which also serve an important function as the attachments for the black alligator leather strap with stainless-steel foldover clasp. A plain polished stainless-steel bezel is the perfect complement to the uncluttered dial, with a domed scratch-resistant sapphire crystal with anti-reflective treatment on the inside completing the high-quality aspect of this timepiece. The De Ville medallion stamped on to the case back depicts the god of Time, Chronos, and recalls the long line of prestige timepieces in the De Ville collection, which is over 30 years old.
The etymology of Byzantion is unknown. It has been suggested that the name is of Thraco-Illyrian origin, It may be derived from a Thracian or Illyrian personal name, Byzas. Ancient Greek legend refers to a legendary king Byzas, the leader of the Megarean colonists and founder of the city. The form Byzantium is a Latinization of the original name. Much later, the name Byzantium became common in the West to refer to the Eastern Roman Empire, the “Byzantine” Empire, whose capital Constantinople stood on the site of ancient Byzantium. This usage was introduced only in 1555 by the German historian Hieronymus Wolf, a century after the empire had ceased to exist. During the time of the empire, the term Byzantium was restricted to just the city, rather than the empire that it ruled.