Akeman Street

Akeman Street

Akeman Street was a major Roman road in England that linked London to the Fosse Way at Cirencester. Its route passed through various towns and villages including Hemel Hempstead, Berkhamsted, Tring, Aylesbury and Bicester before changing direction towards the south-west going past Woodstock and Witney to the north before heading into Cirencester.

Part of the road is still in use today, between London and Bicester, as the A41. Other parts are in use as public footpaths, including a 6 mile stretch which is part of the Oxfordshire Way.

The origins of the road's name are uncertain but certainly date back to the Early Middle Ages. Some have suggested that "Akeman" derives from the Anglo-Saxon words for "oak-man". Others have suggested a connection with Bath, which the Anglo-Saxons called Acemannesceastre ("Acemannes" apparently being derived from the Roman name Aquae Sulis). It is unclear how this might have become associated with the road, but one possibility is that the name was originally used for the longer stretch of road from Bath. [ [http://www.buildinghistory.org/bath/saxon/aquaemann.htm Saxon Bath] ]

The name Akeman Street is also given to the Roman road that ran from Ermine Street near Wimpole Hall north east to the settlement at Durolipons (Cambridge), where it crossed the Roman road known as the Via Devana. Within north Cambridge, the road followed the present day Stretten Avenue, Carlton Way, and Mere Way running north east past Landbeach before joining the present A10 and on towards Ely and The Fens. It then reached Denver and the coast at Brancaster. [cite book | last=Gray |first=Ronald D | coauthors=Stubbings, Derek | title= Cambridge Street-Names: Their Origins and Associations |publisher=Cambridge University Press | date=2000 | location=Cambridge | pages=2-3]


ee also

* Roman Britain
* Roman roads in Britain

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