Alphabetical list of Romano-British place-names
1 This is a list of Celtic Romano-British place-names. Latin names, with the exception of Ad Pontem, are excluded. River-names are also excluded unless a particular river-name was transferred by the Romans to a fort or settlement built close to the river concerned. There are no names of bays, estuaries, promontories or islands in the list, and no tribal names.
2 The list includes not only place-names taken from the Ravenna Cosmography and the Geography of Ptolemy, but also names taken from the Antonine Itinerary and the Notitia Dignitatum, one name from Tacitus (Trucculensem Portum) and one from an inscription (Habitanci).
3 For each name the various forms of that name are arranged in chronological order across the page, going from left to right. The Celtic name is given first, then the Ravenna form of the name, then the Ptolemy form of the name, then the AI form of the name and finally the ND form of the name. The modern name is also indicated, where this is known. Regarding Ravenna's place in the chronological order, it should be noted that although the Cosmography itself was not compiled until around AD700 the maps used by the compiler of the Cosmography date mostly from the first century AD, so that the Ravenna forms of Romano-British place-names are in general the earliest forms we have, considering only the four main sources referred to above. The numbers accompanying Ravenna names are those given in Richmond and Crawford 1949.
4 There then follows a brief account of derivations offered by scholars in the past. Most of the examples are taken from Rivet and Smith 1979. Where a particular opinion as to derivation appears to be widely held the writer will use words such as general, traditional or conventional when writing of that opinion. Where an opinion was put forward by one particular individual then that person is named - the interested reader is invited to consult Rivet and Smith 1979 for the relevant references. There then follows the present writer's own explanation of the place-name. It should be understood that the explanations provided in the list below have been written on the assumption that the reader is already familiar with the contents of various other pages of this website, in particular of Chapter 1, which explains the basic building-blocks of Romano-British names, of Chapter 2, which explains how the basic building-blocks are combined to form compound names, and of Chapter 19, which discusses the structure of Celtic river-names.
5 Chapter 1 explains that different groups of Celtic settlers used the letters n, s, m, r and l to represent 'hill', though the chronological order of these hill-letters appears to have been n1, s, m, r, l1, n2, l2, where l2 was used by people who may have come to Britain sometime after about 150BC. The hill-letters n1 to n2 were used by settlers who appear to have come to Britain at different times before 150BC. In the entries in the list below the writer refers only to the hill-letters n, s, m, r and l unless it seems necessary to distinguish between n1 and n2 or between l1 and l2 in order to explain a particular name.
6 The following abreviations are used in the list below:
Celt = the original Celtic name, assumed to be the same as the earliest available form where this appears to be topographically correct, though of course name endings may differ. Where the Celtic name has been restored by the present writer it is given in italics
Rav = the Ravenna Cosmography
Ptol = the Geography of Ptolemy
AI = the Antonine Itinerary
ND = the Notitia Dignitatum
Mod = modern place-name
var. = variant form
7 No justification is given below for any identification listed. For such explanation the reader should consult the relevant one of chapters 10-16, which discuss Roman place-names in different regions of Britain.
8 For technical reasons the list is divided into eleven parts, as shown below, all parts being directly accessible from the Alphabetical List menu presented above.
|Part 1: A||Part 2: B||Part 3: C|
|Part 4: D||Part 5: E - G||Part 6: H - K|
|Part 7: L||Part 8: M||Part 9: N - R|
|Part 10: S - U||Part 11: V - Z|
9 The following names are not yet included in the list:
Bovio, Canonio, Condate, Luentinum, Masona, Othona, Tamara, Varis and Voran.
[This page was last modified on 21 March 2021]