Suryanath Kamath has put forward an explanation of a possible floral origin of the name, being derived from benga, the Kannada term for Pterocarpus marsupium (also known as the Indian Kino Tree), a species of dry and moist deciduous trees, that grew abundantly in the region.A discovery of Stone Age artefacts during the 2001 census of India at Jalahalli, Sidhapura and Jadigenahalli, all of which are located on Bangalore's outskirts today, suggest probable human settlement around 4,000 BCE.During the reign of the Vijayanagara Empire, Achyuta Deva Raya of the Tuluva Dynasty raised the Shivasamudra Dam across the Arkavati river at Hesaraghatta, whose reservoir is the present city's supply of regular piped water.

It states that the place was part of the Ganga Kingdom until 1004 and was known as "Bengaval-uru", the "City of Guards" in Halegannada (Old Kannada).

An apocryphal story recounts that the 12th century Hoysala king Veera Ballala II, while on a hunting expedition, lost his way in the forest.

Veera Ballala III had appointed a civic head at Hudi (now within Bangalore Municipal Corporation limits), thus promoting the village to the status of a town.

After Veera Ballala III's death in 1343, the next empire to rule the region was the Vijayanagara Empire, which itself saw the rise of four dynasties, the Sangamas (1336 – 1485), the Saluvas (1485 – 1491), the Tuluvas (1491 – 1565), and the Aravidu (1565 – 1646).

Tired and hungry, he came across a poor old woman who served him boiled beans.

The grateful king named the place "benda-kaal-uru" (literally, "town of boiled beans"), which eventually evolved into "Bengalūru".

The two urban settlements of Bangalore – city and cantonment – which had developed as independent entities merged into a single urban centre in 1949.

The existing Kannada name, Bengalūru, was declared the official name of the city in 2006.

The town had two main streets—Chikkapeté Street, which ran east-west, and Doddapeté Street, which ran north-south.