Etymological list of counties of the United Kingdom

Etymological list of counties of the United Kingdom

Etymological list of counties of the United Kingdom is a list of the origins of the names of counties of the United Kingdom. For England and Wales it includes ancient and contemporary counties.

Background

Throughout the histories of the constituent countries of the United Kingdom a variety of languages have been used to name places. These languages were often used in parallel with each other. As a result it is often difficult to assess the genuine etymology of a placename, hence some of the entries below are assigned more than one meaning, depending on which language was used to originally give the place its name. One of the most common words used in county names in the United Kingdom is the suffix "shire". This is a West Saxon word meaning "division".

England


Wales


References

*"The Oxford Dictionary of Placenames" by A.D. Mills and Adrian Room (1991) Oxford University Press
*"Pàrlamaid na h-Alba: Ainmean-àite le buidheachas do dh' Iain Mac an Tailleir"
*"The Celtic Place-names of Scotland" by W.J. Watson (Birlin 2004) ISBN 1-84158-323-5

ee also

*List of counties of the United Kingdom
*British toponymy
*List of generic forms in British place names
*Welsh placenames


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