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«P.H.REANEY Litt.D., Ph.D., F.S.A. Third edition with corrections and additions by R.M.WILSON M.A. LONDON AND NEW YORK First published as A Dictionary ...»

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Unrecorded Old English personal names are found in Middle English documents. Most of these conform to the traditional Wulfstan-type. Some contain elements not noted before (Geongwine, Weorðgifu), others elements rare in Old English names ( Wudubeorht). Some, especially the original bynames, may have been formed in the Middle English period. Many of these names were those of peasants, among whom the native habits of name-giving survived longer than among the upper classes.24 A number of personal names which are not recorded in Old English after the eighth or ninth centuries reappear in Middle English. Some of these names are evidenced only by their occurrence as surnames, others by their first record in the eleventh, twelfth or thirteenth century. Five (including Uhtrīc, v.Outridge) are not found before the fourteenth century and one ( ) only in the fifteenth. Some survive as surnames: Cwēnhild (1086) in Quennell; Ēadwacer (1066) in Edicker; Wæcerhild(c1130) in Wackrell. Others are of importance in confirming the existence of personal names postulated to explain placenames. Pacchild noted in Essex in 1166 must be a compound of OE Pæcc(i) and the common theme -hild. No example of Pcecc(i) is known, but it has been assumed as the base of Patching (Essex, Sussex), Patcham, Pashley (Sussex) and other related placenames. Similarly Wlanchild, recorded only as the name of a peasant-woman in 1206 in Cambridgeshire, and reappearing as a surname in Suffolk (Warin Wlankild 1277 Ely), is a compound of -hild with OE wlanc ‘proud’, postulated as a personal name to explain Longslow (Salop).25 This vitality of Old English names is confirmed by the number of fourteenth-century surnames formed from Old English personal names no longer then in use. We can only suppose that these personal names had continued in use long after the Conquest and that the surnames had already become hereditary. In the 1327 Subsidy Roll for Somerset, 66 per cent of those assessed were named: John (23 per cent), William (16 per cent), Robert (8 per cent), Richard (7 per cent), Walter (6 per cent) or Thomas (6 per cent). The rest shared 95 different names of which 8 were English and 5 Scandinavian. But there were some 200 surnames formed from English or Scandinavian personal names no longer in use, e.g. Thomas Ailmer, Richard Leverich, John Sefoghel, William Serich, Robert Outright, Philip Thorbarn, Edith Thurkyld.

The rate at which this change from English to Norman christian names proceeded varied from class to class and among different families of the same class. It was slowest among the peasantry. In 1115, at Winchester, two out of six English fathers gave their children English names. In 1148 all the children named bore French names whether their fathers had English, Scandinavian or French names. At King’s Lynn in 1166 the process was less advanced. Of 17 fathers with Scandinavian names and 18 with English names, only half followed the new fashion.

Occasional pedigrees put forward to support or resist a claim that a man was a villein shed some light on the names used by peasants. In one from Lincolnshire which must take us back to 1100 or beyond (1200 Cur), a man with the English name of Elric had a daughter Oise or Osse and two sons Agge and Siuuerd, all probably bearing Scandinavian names. Oise may be ODa Ása (f), Agge is ODa Aggi; Siuuerd may be ODa Sigwarth or OE Sigweard. Siward had a son Uhtred (OE) and Agge a son named Elric after his grandfather and a daughter with the French name Beatrice who married a Walter and named her son (living in 1200) after his father. Oise had a son William Belle and two grandsons Roger and Robert Belle. Here the change to French names seems to have been due to women.

A similar Suffolk pedigree (1200 Cur) takes us back a generation farther. Godwin named his three children from three different languages: Turgod (Scandinavian), Goda (English) and Watcelina (French). Goda gave his son the French name of Robert and his daughter Agatha married a man named Thomas. Watcelina named her daughters Einilda (OG Aginildis) and Langiva (OE *Langgifu). Turgod named both his sons in English, Godwin and Edric, the latter continuing the English tradition in Alfridus (probably OE possibly Æðelfrið), whose son (alive in 1200) was Osbert (OE Ōsbeorhf). Thus Godwin’s descendants in the male line kept to the native tradition in names for five generations to 1200.

From a number of similar pedigrees going back for two to four generations from 1200 it would appear that among the peasants at the beginning of the thirteenth century Old English personal names were being replaced by names of French origin, but some families were more conservative than others. The variety of personal names used, both English and French, is noteworthy, as well as the general absence of bynames. The vitality of the Old English name-system is revealed by the evidence of the persistence of the repitition of either the first or second theme in names of the same family and by the existence of names otherwise unrecorded.26 Both English and Scandinavian personal names were still common on the Suffolk manors of the Bishop of Elyin 1277.

The number of unrecorded forms of Old English names that have to be assumed for the surnames dealt with in the following entries emphasizes how little we really know about Old English names, but to the reader it may appear an easy way of providing an origin for a surname, and he may wonder what evidence there is for such assumptions. In most cases there is definite evidence from place-names, or from the existence of the name in early Middle English, to indicate that it was probably current in Old English though not recorded in the surviving records. At the least the various elements or the general form of the name may be comparable with extant names from the period.





Old English Personal Names Surviving in Modern Surnames

Monothematic Bada (Bade), *Beald (Bald), *Becca (Beck), Bēda (Beade), Beorn (Barne), Bill (Bill), Bisceop (Bishop), *Blīða (Bly), Boda (Bode), Botta (Bott), Brūn (Brown), Budda (Budd), *Butt(a) (Butt), Bynni (Binns), Cada (Cadd, Cade), Cana (Cane), Ceadda (Chadd), *Cēne, *Cyne (Keen), Cniht (Knight), *Cocc (a) (Cock), *Codd (a) (Codd), Cola (Cole), Creoda (Creed), Cyng (King), *Cyppe (Kipps), *Dæcca (Dack), Deora (Dear), Dodd (a), Dudd (a) (Dodd) *Ducc (Ducket, Duxon), *Dylla, *Dylli (Dill), *Flint (Flint), Fugol (Fowl), *Glæd (Glade), *Glēaw (Glew), Goda (m), Gode (f) (Good), Golda (m), Golde (f) (Gold), *Grante, *Grente (Grant), *Grēne (Green), *Hand (Hand), Heafoc (Hawk), Hēaha (Hay), *Heard (Hard), Hunna (Hunn), Hwīta (White), *Lemma (Lemm), Lēof (Leaf), Lēofa (m), Lēofe (f) (Leaves), *Leppe (Lipp), *Lutta (Lutt), Mann (Man), Mawa, *Mēawa (Maw), *Mēaw (Mew), *Milde (f) (Millsom), *Modd (Mudd), Odda (Odd), Pæga (Pay), Pymma (Pim), Scot (Scott), *Sida (Seed), Snel (Snell), *Sprott (Sprott), Swan (Swan), Swēt (a) (m), Swēte (f) (Sweet), Swift (Swift), *Tæppa (Tapp), *Tāt (Tate), *Tetta (Tett), Tunna (Tunn), *þeōda (m), *þeōde (f) (Theed), *Ucca (Huck), *Ugga (Hug), Wada (Wade), Wine (Winn) Derivatives in -ing *Bealding (Balding), Billing (Billing), *Botting (Botting), Brūning (Browning), *Budding (Budding), *Cypping (Kipping), Dēorlng, (Dearing), Dēorling, (Darling), Dūning (Downing), Dunning (Dunning), *Dylling (Delling, Dilling), *Fugeling (Fowling), *Glæding (Gladden), Goding (Gooding), Golding (Golding), Hearding (Harding), *Hræfning (Ravening), Hunning (Hunning), *Hwætling (Whatlin), Hwīting (Whiting), *Lēofecing (Lucking), Leofing, (Levinge), *Lēofring (Lovering), Manning (Manning), *Munding (Munnings), *Pening (Penney), Snelling (Snelling), Swēting (Sweeting), *Tæpping (Tappin), *Tipping (Tipping), *Tylling (Tilling), *Utting (Utting), *Wealding (Walding), *Weorðing (Worthing), *Wihtling, *Hwītling (Whitling), *Wilding (Wilding), *Wulfing (Woolving) Dithematic *Ācmann (Oakman) (f) (Alflatt), Ælfgār (Algar), Ælfhēah (Alphege), Ælfliere (Alvar), *Ælfmann (Elfman), Ælfnoð (Allnatt), (Alfred, Averay), Ælfrīc (Aldrich), Ælfsige (Elsey), Ælfstān (Allston), Ælfweald (Eliot, Ellwood), Ælfweard (Allward), Ælfwīg (Alaway, Allvey), Ælfwine (Alven, Alwin) Æscwine (Ashwin) Æðlbeorht (Albright), *Æðeldæg (f) (Allday), (f) (Alflatt), Æðelfrið (m), *Æðelfrīð (f) (Alfrey), Æðelgār (Algar), Æðlgēat, (f) (Aylett), Æðelgifu (f) (Aylifi), Æðelheard (Adlard), (Aylmer), Æðelnōð (Allnatt), (Aldred, Allred), Æðelrīc (Aldrich, Allright, Etheredge), Æðelstān (Allston, Aston, Athelstan), (f) (Audrey), Æðelweard (Allward, Aylward), Æðelwīg (Alaway), Æðelwine (Alven, Alwin, Aylwin) Beadurīc (Badrick), (f) (Baldey), *Bealdrīc (Baldree), *Bealdmann (Balman), *Bealdstān (Balston) Beorhtgifu (f) (Berriff, Brightiff), Beorhtsige (Brixey), Beorhtmann (Brightman), (Brightmore), Beorhtwīg (Brighty), Beorhtwine, Beorhtwynn (f) (Brightween) *Bīedlufu (f) (Bedloe) Blæchere (Blacker), Blæcmann (Blackman), Blæcstān (Blackston) Brūngār (Brunger), Brūnstān (Brunsdon), *Brūnsunu (Brownson), Brūnwine (Brunwin) Burgheard (Burchard, Burrard), (Burrett), Burgrīc (Burridge), Burgstān, *Bucstān (Buxton), Burgweald (Burall), Burgweard (Burward) *Cēnweard (Kenward), *Cēnwīg (Kenway), Cēolmund, *Cildmann (Chillman) Cūðbeald (Cobbald), Cūðbeorht (Cuthbert), Cūðrīc (Cutteridge), Cūðwulf (Culf) Cwēnhild (f) (Quenell) Cynebeald (Kemble), (Kenmare), Cynemann (Kinman), Cynerīc (Kerrich), Cyneweard (Kenward), Cynewīg (Kenway) (Daymer), *Dægmann (Dayman), *Denebeald (Denbow), Dēormann (Dearman), Dēorwine (Darwin), Dudemann (Dodman), Dūnstān (Dunstan) Ēadgār (Edgar), Ēadhūn (Eaden), (Admer), *Ēadmann (Edman), Ēadmund (Edmond), (Errett), Ēadrīc (Edrich), Ēadstān (Aston, Easton), Ēadwacer (Edicker), Ēadweard (Edward, Ewart), Ēadwīg (Eddy), Ēadwine (Edwin), Ēadwulf (Eddols) Ealdgār (Algar), *Ealdnōð (Allnatt), (Aldred, Allred), *Ealdstān (Allston, Elston), Ealdwīg (Alaway, Aldway), Ealdwine (Alden, Alwin) Ealhhere (Alger, Alker), Ealhstān (Allston, Elston), (f) (Audrey) Earnwīg (Arneway), (Eastmure), Ēastmund (Eastman) Ecgbeorht (Egbert), Ecgwulf (Edgell) Eoforwacer (Earwaker), Eoforwine (Erwin) (Fordred), Frēobeorn (Freeborn), Friðulāf (Freelove) Gārmund (Garman), Gārwīg (Garraway), Gārwulf (Gorrell), *Geongwine (Yonwin), *Glædmann (Gladman), *Glædwine (Gladwin) Godgifu (f) (Goodeve), Godhere (Gooder), Godlamb (Goodlamb), Godlēof, *Godlēofu (f) (Goodliffe), (Gummer), Godmann (Goodman), Godrīc (Goodrich), Godsunu (Godson), Godweard (Godward), Godwīg (Goodway), Godwine (Godwin, Goodwin) *Goldbeorht (Goldbard), *Goldburg (f) (Goldburg), *Goldheafoc (Goldhawk), *Goldhere (Golder), *Goldmann (Goldman), Goldstān (Goldston), *Goldwīg (Goldway), Goldwine (Goldwin) *Gūðbeald (Gubell), Gūðlāc (Goodlake), (Gummer), Gūðmund (Godman) *Heardmann (Hardman), Heaðuwīg (Hathaway), Hereweald (Harold), Hereweard (Hereward), *Holdbeorht (Holbert), *Hūngār (Hunger), *Huntmann (Huntman), Hūnwine (Unwin), (Whatman), *Hwītheard (Whittard), *Hwitmann (Whiteman), *Hygemann (Human) Landbeorht (Lambrick), (Lemmer) Lēofdæg (Loveday), Lēofeca (Levick, Livick, Leffek), Lēofgār (Loveguard), Lēofgēat (Levet), Lēofgōd (Lovegood), (Lemmer), Lēofmann (Loveman), (Leverett), Lēofrīc (Leverage), Lēofsige (Lewsey), Lēofsunu (Leveson), Lēofweald (Leavold), Lēofweard (Livard), Lēofwīg (Leavey), Lēofwine (Lewin) *Leohtwine (Litwin), (Lilleyman) (Merrett), Mildburh (f) (Milborrow), Norðmann (Norman) Ordgār (Orgar), Ordrīc (Orrick), Ordwīg (Ordway) Ōgār (Hosker), (Osmer), Ōsweald (Oswald), Ōswine (Oswin) *Pīcstān (Pickstone), (Redway), (Readwin), *Rimhild (f) (Rimell) (Seabert), (Seaborn), (Seaber), (f) (Seavers), (Saffery), (Sagar), (Sait), (Seagood), (f) (Sealeaf), (Sallitt), (Salway), (Seamer), (Seaman), (Search), (Sewell), S (Seward), (Self) *Sidumann (Seedman) (f) (Siffleet), Sigegār (Siggers), (Simey), Sigenōð (Sinnatt), (Sired), Sigerīc (Search), Sigeweald (Sewell), Sigeweard (Seward) *Smēawine (Smewing), *Snelgār (Snelgar), Spearheafoc (Sparrowhawk) *Stānburg (f) (Stanberry), Stānheard (Stannard), *Stānhild (f) (Stanhill), (Stammer) *Stubheard (Stubbert), *Sunnmann (Sunman) *Swētlufu (f) (Sweetlove), Swētmann (Sweetman), *Swētrīc (Swatridge) *Trumbeald (Trumble), *Tūnheard (Tunnard), *Tūnhild (f) (Tunnell) þēodbeorht (Tebrich) Unwine (Unwin), (Oughtred), *Uhtrīc (Outridge) *Wœcerhild (f) (Wackrill), (Warman), *Wealdwine (Walwin) Wīgbeorht (Wyberd), Wīgbeorn (Wyborn), Wīgburh (f) (Wyber), Wīgheard (Wyard), (Wymer), Wīgmund (Wyman) Wihtgār (Widger), Wihtheard (Whittard), Wihtlāc (Whitelock), *Wihtmann (Wightman), Wihtrīc (Whitteridge) Wilbeorht (Wilbert), Wilrīc (Wildridge) Winebeald (Winbolt), Winegār (Wingar), Winemann (Winman) *Wudufugol (Woodfull), *Wuduheard (Huddart, Woodard), *Wudulāc (Woodlake) Wulfbeald (Wolbold), Wulffrīð (Woolfrey), Wulfgār (Woolgar), Wulfgēat (Woolvett), Wulfgifu (f) (Wolvey), (Woolmer), Wulfnōð (Woolner), (Orred), Wulfrīc (Woolrich, Hurry), Wulfsige (Woolsey), Wulfstān (Woolston), Wulfweard (Woollard), Wulfwīg (Woolway), Wulfwine (Woolven) Wynrīc (Windridge)

Scandinavian Personal Names

The vitality of the Scandinavian name-system in the Danelaw has been discussed and illustrated by Sir Frank Stenton.27 In addition to Scandinavian names like Thorald, Swain, Haldan, etc., which might appear in southern texts, there are characteristic northern names like Gamel, Gille, Ketel, and others of characteristic rarity, as Ketelbern, Airic, Ailof, etc. Particularly noteworthy are such diminutive forms as Hasti or Asti, a colloquial diminutive of ON Ásketell, surviving in Hastie, Steinki, a short form of compounds of Stein, Anke, a diminutive of names in Arn-, the source of Hanks.

Though less extensive than in Lincolnshire, Scandinavian influence was not negligible in East Anglia. Some 8 per cent of the peasants of the Bury manors c1095 bore Scandinavian names of which Lute and Challi are not recorded elsewhere in England.28 The vitality of these names is shown by the formation of such Anglo-Scandinavian compounds as Lefchetel, Ketelbert and þurwif, recorded in 962 and reappearing in Yorkshire in 1166 (P), and by the survival in Kilvert, Ketteridge and Tureff of the unrecorded hybrids Cylferð, Cytelrīc and þorgifu (f). The pet-form Suarche, from AngloScandinavian Swartcol, has its parallel in the otherwise unknown Samke, still found in the rare surname Sank. Other noteworthy survivals are Goodhew from the previously unknown Guðhugi, a parallel to the Illhugi found at Thoraey and the Suffolk Tovell from ON Tófa-Hildr, a rare type of compound, ‘Hildr the daughter of Tofi’.29



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