Monday, 24 June 2019

On the use of compound place-names and double locatives in English bynames

Back in 2009 the College of Heralds had a precedent in place which disallowed the use of compound locatives in English bynames. From my experience I knew this was wrong, and did some research to overturn this precedent on the submission for the name of Avelyn Wexcombe of Great Bedwyn, using the SC8 series of records in the UK NAtional Archives, which were an early set of digitised records, allowing copies of the originals to be checked.

Despite the examples below, it is far more usual to find contracted locatives, so Greats and Littles would be dropped, and places like Hampton en la Vaale would be referred to just as Hampton. 

This first set relates to the immediate pattern of the submission, that of Great X.
SC 8/91/4521 Gilbert de Grte. Chyshull [Great Chishill] c.1330
SC 8/45/2222 Robt. Elys de Grant Yernemuth [Great Yarmouth] c.1302
SC 8/61/3016 William le Moigne de Grannt Ravele Chivaler [Great Raveley] c.1341
SC 8/71/3549 Johan Salman de gnde. Lyvmere [Great Livermere] 140

Then I went hunting for some examples of a more generic pattern for compounded names across the board.
SC 8/176/8756 Johan fil Andrew de Pett Bamton [Little Bampton] 1333
SC 8/12/595 & SC 8/12/596 John fit Johns de Sutton sup. Trenta [Sutton on Trent] 1348
SC 8/270/13465 & SC 8/185/9212 Richard le fitz Robt. de Walton en la Dale [Walton-le-Dale] c.1350
SC 8/251/12509 Merand Gay de Cheping Toryton [Chipping Torrington] 1390
SC 8/224/11163 Margaret Shephard de Hampton en la Vaale [Hampton in the Vale] 1388

Compounded place-names were often conjoined as a single word, and this pattern also shows up when used within personal names:
SC 8/13/616 Robt. Bruton de Chepyngnorton [Chipping Norton] 1348
SC 8/131/6546 & SC 8/4/153 Wauter in the herne de Estsmethefeld [East Smithfield] c.1320
(The East contraction is common, this being a single example. The <in the herne> is a construction I'd not come across before. According to the OED a herne is a corner, nook or hiding place.)
SC 8/252/12591 Henry Scot de Hogenorton [Hook Norton] 1386
SC 8/181/9016 William Credi & Roger Credi de Stokepogeys [Stoke Poges] c.1392
SC 8/121/6048 John Warde de Kirbebydon [Kirby Bydon] c.1381-2

Whilst searching for the above examples, and at other times, I also came across some examples of double locatives in names, a pretty definitive indicator that the locatives had started to be used as inherited surnames, the first being the inherited name and the second their current associated residence.
SC 8/131/6546 John de Waltham de Lonndre c.1320
SC 8/16/722 Johan de Oldebury de la Leigh {en la counte de Wiltes} 1320-1327
SC 8/48/2395: Lucas de Grendon de Lonndres c.1328
SC 8/95/4705 John de York de gnt. Driffeld [Great Driffield] 1381-2
SC 8/252/12566 Thomas de Annesley de Kynnalton [1396]

There are examples from other series in the Archives, but not from digitised series, so they can't be double checked without visiting Kew.
C 241/18/2 & C 241/18/62 John de Aston Somerville 1294
C 241/128/195 & C 241/128/212 John de Ashton-under-Lyne 1350
C 241/56/39 Hugh de Chipping Norton 1306
C 241/35/254 & C 241/35/256 Walter, son of Gilbert de Compton Dando {Dauno} 1301

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